Charities see high volume toward year's end

LINCOLN HEIGHTS, LOS ANGELES

According to their statistics, Goodwill Southern California has received 250,000 more donations in 2011 versus 2010.

Though it has been a good year for charities overall, the last week of December is particularly busy. Goodwill's Lincoln Heights warehouse saw a steady stream of donated items Wednesday morning.

Goodwill's Director of Retail Operations Ray Tellez said the month of December sees 30 percent more donations than any other month, and the last week of December amounts to about 50 percent of the month's total collection.

The donated items are first sold at Goodwill stores, and items not sold in stores are auctioned or even sold overseas, explained Tellez.

Some say the spike in donations is because people are feeling more philanthropic, while others are simply trying to meet the tax write-off deadline.

"It's kind of like spring cleaning before spring. I feel this need to kind of look at things I don't need, and whatever I can give away, and I'd help somebody else, too," said Los Feliz resident Joe Huey.

More than 90 percent of everything sold at Goodwill stores goes directly back into the community by way of programs that help the unemployed find work.

It's an incentive charity officials hope will keep their donation numbers up well into next year.

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