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Keep shoes and purses out of the landfill: donate them

 |  Eco Catholic

Julie Scaglione, a resident of the St. Louis area, is intent on keeping shoes and handbags out of the landfill. Instead, she wants people to donate these items to her nonprofit organization, Gateway2Give. Scaglione sells the items to exporters for developing world resale. A portion of the money from the sales is turned into grants for water projects across the planet working to provide access to clean water.

Here is the news release, as sent by email. For more information about Scaglione's organization, go to Gateway2Give.com.

January 15, 2013 --ST. LOUIS, MO: Overwhelmed by clutter? It's easy to pull up a couch and watch A&E's Storage Wars, but Julie Scaglione, founder of Gateway2Give and Clean Water Mission is helping individuals and organizations get off the proverbial couch, clean out their clutter and repurpose everyday items to raise funds for local projects and global clean water projects. As a social entrepreneur concerned about the health of local nonprofits and access to safe drinking water, Scaglione kept running against the barriers of money and time to address her mission. Instead of throwing her hands up and lounging on the couch, this past summer Scaglione set out to make it incredibly easy for anyone to truly make a difference, even save lives, without asking for a cent.

Having focused on clean water initiatives since 2007, in August 2012 Scaglione founded the low-profit, social enterprise Gateway2Give providing organizations and individuals across the United States with an opportunity to raise money for their own projects or favorite charity, while helping resolve the global water crisis. By simply holding everyday item donation drives, (currently shoes and handbags) drive leaders have no need to ask their donors for money, just to clean out their closets and storage spaces. For those individuals and organizations looking for a service project, Clean Water Mission, the nonprofit, board-run, social enterprise charity partner of Gateway2Give, can help anyone run a drive where all proceeds go to clean water projects. 

As social enterprises, Gateway2Give and Clean Water Mission fill lives, not landfills and produce ongoing benefits throughout the process: Jobs (selling the items) are created for people struggling to lift themselves out of poverty; Affordable, quality items become available in poverty stricken areas; and Thousands of useful items are diverted from landfills. Doing well by doing good is the goal of Gateway2Give and Clean Water Mission as they partner with others to do good in their community and across the globe. Businesses and individuals raising funds for their favorite charities, as well as churches and schools-from pre-K through college- raising funds for their needs, play a significant role in filling lives not landfills. As a mother of three school aged children and active Catholic parishioner of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Manchester, MO, Scaglione knew that to be successful, the everyday item collection drive process had to be easy, with a low time commitment, for it to work. The Gateway2Give staff are ready to support volunteer-led drives and the website provides posters, fliers, email templates and website blurbs that can be downloaded and used as-is or customized for any drive. As an example of the marriage of purpose and ease:

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St. Joseph Catholic School not only embraces her children every day, they also embraced Scaglione's concepts as a committed partner for social justice through everyday item collection drives. "Holding a drive to help children without clean water in developing countries is a perfect fit for Catholic School week in January and for the 5th grade's annual service project," said Rev. Thomas J. Santen pastor of St. Joseph.

From February 11-25, 2013, St. Joseph's Catholic Church at 567 St. Joseph Lane (63021) in Manchester, MO is sponsoring a Gateway2Give drive for shoes and handbags, with a goal to raise $600.00 for clean water projects and an equal amount for the school's needs. Students, parishioners, clergy and staff are cleaning out their closets and asking friends, family and area residents to do the same.

"It is so easy to get everything in place for our drive with the support and materials already available and the children are thrilled to be a part of not only raising funds without asking someone to buy a product but also to know other children will have water to drink from their efforts," said Jeannie Dandino, Principal of St. Joseph Catholic School.

The proof is in the doing as they say and even though they are very recently launched, Gateway2Give and Clean Water Mission already have water projects in the works. In February, Gateway2Give is one of the sponsors supporting Vic Hamer, a Sparta, IL resident and volunteer, as he travels to the African village of Oltinka, Kenya about six miles South of map point Emaili, Kenya, establishing a well and water purification system that will serve 4,300 people and 10,000 head of livestock in the surrounding area.

Gateway2Give and Clean Water Mission are committed to providing transparent updates on their financials and on-going water projects results.

"Being transparent about money coming in and the impact of the resulting clean water projects globally and nonprofit projects is really important to me, said Scaglione. All too often donors of goods, time and money have no real way to know if their donation did any good. Updating our website with pictures and documentation to keep all of our supporters in the know about the great things they are doing is a critical part of our work."

In celebration of World Water Day, March 22, 2013, Gateway2Give and Clean Water Mission is kicking off a new tradition as it launches its "Get Tanked" campaign to pay for the installation of a village size water tank. To contribute, please send checks payable to Clean Water Mission to 15009 Manchester Road, #115, Manchester, MO 63011. Online donations can be made by visiting www.gateway2give.com/CleanWaterMission. To learn more about the celebration of World Water Day and global water facts visit http://www.unwater.org/.

For details about how you or your group can sponsor a drive as a fundraiser or service project, call 314-272-0800 or 1-888-417-3239 or visit http://www.gateway2give.com/.

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