- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Editorials from around Pennsylvania:

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BE AWARE OF WHERE YOUR CHARITABLE GIVING GOES

To be sure, Goodwill Industries of North Central Pennsylvania helps people and the environment.

It sells inexpensive donated clothing, household goods and other items, allowing families to stretch budgets and reducing the amount of material sent to landfills.

But the nonprofit apparently holds less than charitable feelings toward some competition.

The bickering we have seen among otherwise positive organizations is unnecessary and could turn off potential donors.

On its website and in a recent letter campaign, Goodwill has called attention to clothing and shoe donation boxes that USAgain, Planet Aid, Community Aid, New Life Recycling and other outside organizations have placed in Centre County. The dispute was chronicled in the April 6 CDT and at CentreDaily.com.

Goodwill urges donors to think twice and learn more about the groups before adding to their boxes. Its bone of contention is that the others, not all of which claim nonprofit status, are siphoning off goods that could help local households.

“It’s on the rise; that’s all I can tell you,” said Ray Donati, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries of North Central Pennsylvania, which includes Centre among the 13 counties in its service region.

“We’re starting to see that as an impact,” he added.

Donations kept in the area, Goodwill argues, serve another beneficial purpose by supporting outlets that provide local jobs.

If not Goodwill, people should consider giving to other charities in their communities if they want to aid their neighbors, Donati said.

In Centre County, for example, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, FaithCentre, New Hope Thrift, the State College Woman’s Club, Centre Peace and others all accept donations for thrift stores. So does the Salvation Army, which helps families in need but does not have a local retail outlet.

Many churches and service organizations also collect clothing and other goods.

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