I don’t know who needs to hear this, but it’s time to donate that bag of clothes that has been sitting in the trunk of your car for months. Two women from Warwick, Rhode Island would like to take if off your hands, and you can rest assured that your donations will be going towards a good cause.

Business partners Melanie Flamand and Marjorie Muller are Rhode Island natives that wanted to make a difference. Flamand works in insurance and Muller is a retired banker, but together, they own and operate Curbside Textile Recycling (CTR). It became their passion project about a year and a half ago when they decided that it was time to help the environment.

There comes a time in every homeowner’s life when they are ready to purge old clothing, shoes, and accessories, but all too often, homeowners will throw them out because of convenience, landing shirts, shoes, and the like to take up space in the landfill. That’s where the CTR team comes in.

“We have partnered together to alleviate any inconvenience in ‘cleaning your closet,'" they said.

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You simply place your recyclable bag of clothes, shoes, and handbags on your front steps on trash pick-up day, and the CTR team will come by and pick it up.

“Then, with those donations, we take the clothes and sell them to a warehouse where they get redistributed worldwide,” Flamand said. “With that money, we donate two cents per pound to three local charities in each town from which we picked up the donations.”

In other words, your old clothes turn into a donation to a local charity right in your town.

Since the beginning, Flamand and Muller have successfully diverted 314,000 pounds of clothing from the landfill and have donated over $6,200 to charities.

During the pandemic, Flamand and Muller decided to add non-perishable items to their pick-up list, where 100 percent of those non-perishables would be donated to local food pantries. They continue to help local shelters and pantries to this day.

“Just because the pandemic is over, hunger doesn’t stop,” Flamand said.

Curbside Textile Recycling currently services Rhode Island and some parts of Massachusetts when contacted through their website. Flamand’s personal goal is to collect one million pounds of clothing a year, resulting in $20,000 to local charities.

“It’s really fulfilling to make a difference for the environment and for people in need,” Flamand said. All it takes is a bag of old clothes on your doorstep.

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