We’re glad you ask questions. We think it’s important that you know what happens to your donations and how they’re used to support mentoring and other services provided by Big Brother Big Sister Foundation.
We’re very different than most non-profit organizations in the used goods industry. We firmly believe the things that make us different help us raise more money that, in turn, helps even more at risk children.
What is your charity tax number? Our IRS tax exempt number is 043323872. We began operations in March of 1997. You can obtain a copy of our tax filings through the Massachusetts AG’s office or any of a number of online sites, including Guidestar.
What happens to the items I donate? They are sold to generate money that supports the work of Big Brother Big Sister mentoring agencies.
Where does the money you make go? Revenue from the sale of donated items is used to pay for the operations of the Foundation and also profits are distributed to BBBS mentoring agencies.
What makes you different from the other charities picking up clothing? We have been in business for over 25 years, impacting the lives of Littles and Bigs through the collection of clothing, shoes, and household items. We collect donations through bins as well as residential picks ups.
How much can I declare on my receipt? Check with your tax adviser and IRS publication 746 for more information on the value of your donation for tax purposes. We have some resources listed here
Why can’t you help me with the value of my items? The IRS places the valuation on donated goods for tax purposes squarely on the donor. If you need help estimating the value of your items or determining how to claim your tax deduction when you file your taxes, these IRS publications can provide you with more detailed information:
Why can’t your driver come inside my house? Insurance liability restricts us from entering your home.
Why can’t your driver come to the back of my house? Due to safety concerns. Over the years, we’ve learned that far fewer accidents- and misunderstandings- occur when donations are left in a place that’s viewable from the street.
Do you receive money/credit for the items dropped off at local thrift stores? Many donors tell us they drop off donations at one of several local thrift stores, thinking that we receive payment or some type of credit for that drop off.
If you want your donations to benefit BBBSF & the thousands of at-risk children our mentoring agencies support, please donate directly.
Why can’t you pick up on Route 9 or Commonwealth Avenue? Those are two of the twenty or so streets and roads from which MA or local laws prohibit our trucks.
How do I become a Big Brother or Big Sister? What’s the process? The Foundation’s role is to collect and resell used goods and use the proceeds from those sales to support BBBS mentoring agencies in our area. We do not provide mentoring or other services. For information on becoming a “Big,” please call the great people at Big in Boston. They can be reached by visiting bigsister.org or bbbsmb.org
How do I sign my child up for a Big Sister or Big Brother mentor? What’s the process? The Foundation’s role is to collect and resell used goods and to support BBBS mentoring agencies in our area from the proceeds of those sales. We do not provide mentoring or other services. For answers to this question, please visit bigsister.org or bbbsmb.org.
How much of the money you make goes to the kids? We provide unrestricted funding to BBBS mentoring agencies, which and may even be used anyway they see fit.
You missed my pick up. When are you picking up again? We are truly sorry for any donations we miss. Please let us know that you have been missed and our dispatch office will work with you to arrange a mutually agreed up date and time to return to your home for your donation.
I arranged a pick up, but forgot to leave out my items. What should I do? Give us a call. We will send a driver back to your house if our schedule permits. If you call us after our truck(s) have left your town, we’ll arrange another time to come back and pick up your donations.
How can my company get involved? Hundreds of companies hold clothing drives on our behalf during the year. If your company is interested, just let us know. You can also provide your parking lot for us to conduct collection events. If you’re in a metro and are amenable, we can also use your parking lot for one of our “popup stores,” a truck filled with goods that are sold to the general public in the area. We carry extra insurance for this type of event. Please feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out other ways to help.