The public is being asked not to dump their donations of clothes outside of Diabetes Canada clothing bins situated around the Cowichan Valley.
Diabetes Canada spokeswoman Kathleen Powderley said that if people have too many clothes for the bins to handle, the non-profit organization has a free home pick-up service that can be reached at declutter.diabetes.ca.
There are more than 3,000 Diabetes Canada drop boxes located in communities throughout Canada, including five in the Valley, for donations of reusable clothing and cloth items.
The one located on the corner of Somenos Road and Highway 18 has been raising concerns due to the piles of clothes that are periodically seen dumped next to it.
Local resident Rhonda Groicher said the bin always seems to be overflowing.
“Where are the people that pick up the clothes?” she asked.
“It has since been cleaned up but it’s really sad that this has to happen and that people are too lazy to find another box or even try another time. They can even take them directly to local secondhand stores.”
Powderley apologized to the community for the situation.
She said the drop-off boxes are usually checked once a week and cleaned out if they are full.
Powderley said spring is a busy season for the drop-off boxes and they are checked and cleaned out twice a week at this time of year when required.
She said the one on the corner of Somenos Road and Highway 18 was already checked once on the week in question, but the clothes and other materials that were dumped at the location were left at the bin shortly after that.
“The problem we had with that bin is that the private-property owner whose land it is on was not calling the correct number when he was trying to call us and tell us about the pile of clothing left there,” Powderley said.
“The bins are not normally full so there’s not often any reason for people not to place their donations inside them. If people have too much clothes to fit in the bin, then contact us and we can come to their homes and get it.”
Powderley said the clothing from the bins across Canada are recycled to various used-clothing retailers and about $5 million a year raised through the program, which also takes small household and electronic items, goes into diabetes research, and sends approximately 2,400 kids with type-one diabetes and their families to camp every year.