Goodwill Industries vs. The Salvation Army


Since I’ve been on a uncluttering binge these past few months, I’ve had to make several drop-offs to my neighborhood Goodwill.  A few times I’ve wondered what the difference was between each charity (most notably between Goodwill and The Salvation Army) and if one was better than the other.  But I never made the effort to seek out an answer…till today.

When my friends and I stopped by a Goodwill this past weekend, the subject of how these charities work came up in our conversation.  Do they really help those in need?  How much do the owners/higher-ups in these charities get paid? 

On a related note, yesterday I asked my pastor if his daughters needed anything because I have a lot of girly things that I plan on donating.  He said to just go ahead and “clutter them up.”  If there is anything they won’t use, they’ll pass it on to The Salvation Army.  I took the opportunity to ask him if there was a particular reason why they supported The Salvation Army and he told me that they are a Christian charity.  I had no idea!  He told me to look up the story of William Booth – the founder of The Salvation Army.  I looked him up today and was so inspired by his compassion for people and his enduring love for the Lord.

To be honest, I didn’t find too many independent articles out there with a thorough comparison of the two charities.  From what I read on Wikipedia, it seems like both of them began with a Christian foundation but Goodwill eventually became secular.  I think the important thing to remember is that both charities have done and continue to do amazing things for our country (and others!) so there is probably no real need to bash on one and rave about the other.

I will probably continue to contribute to Goodwill directly (since its closer to my house).  But I’m glad some of the stuff that I give to my pastor’s family will trickle down to The Salvation Army.

If anything, the biggest takeaway from my research is to stop buying so much stuff (especially clothes) altogether!  I came across this article today and I’ve never been more motivated to stop buying cheap, unsustainable clothes.  I have the author’s book “Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion” currently on hold at my local library.  I’m so excited to be educated on this subject and to pass the knowledge along!

2 thoughts on “Goodwill Industries vs. The Salvation Army

  1. …I take things to two stores that support the Sheltered Workshop program – a daycare/employment/school for developmentally disabled adults and children.

    “…Salvation Army is an evangelical Christian organization with a history of anti-gay hiring practices.
    The Salvation Army does provide a lot of funding for a variety of organizations that are considered philanthropic. ”

    “Michael Miller, CEO of Goodwill, earns $856,043 plus expenses.
    The Salvation Army’s Commissioner Todd Bassett receives a salary of only $13,000 per year (plus housing) for managing this $2 billion dollar organization .”

    …you may check some sources below:


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