Saturday, May 26, 2012


Monday, May 14, 2012

on being ethical: the problem with giving

As I’m too lazy to put on a garage sale at the moment, I thought giving away goods to a charity would be easy. Just drop them off and away they go to raise money for worthy charities. Too often I just dump them in the bins of my closest, large op shop. But do I really want to give the Catholic church more money to protect paedophiles?

Other than the issue of being a non-theist no longer wanting to support charities that are a front for recruiting for their religion, not all “op shops” or clothing bins are run by bone fide charities. The ever popular Savers for example is a ”for profit” offshoot of a US based company of the same name. As for some of the bins with charity-ish sounding names, if you don’t recognise the name there’s a good chance it’s run by a commercial recycler. While recycling is a better option than dumping in landfill, I’m not keen on giving away money just to make another capitalist richer.

The List

I’ve started with secular op shops in inner city Melbourne, culled from the Australian Op Shop Listing. Please let me know what else should be on the list.

Mon-Fri 10:00-4:00
Sat 10:00-12:00 

Mon-Fri 10:00-5:30
Sat 10:00-5:30 

Mon-Fri 10:00-4:00
Sat 10:00-1:00 


Mon-Fri: 9:30am-5pm
Sat 10am-4pm 
(is this still open?)

Mon-Fri 10:00-5:00
Sat 10:00-5:00 
(is this still open?)

Mon to Fri 10.00am to 4.00pm
Sat 9.30am to 1.00pm 

Tue - Fri 10am - 5pm
Sat 10am - 3pm

South Melbourne
Mon - Fri 10-5
Sat 10-2


Mon to Sat: 10am - 5pm
Sun: 11am - 4pm 


Not inner city
Out of my zone (I'm averse to burning fossil fuel for the sake of delivering my goodies to charities) but worth a mention RSPCA, Red CrossEpilepsy Victoria and the Animal Protection Society.

What’s in a name?

Some op shops appear to not have religious affiliations until you dig beneath the surface. The most obvious is the Brotherhood of Saint Laurence’s up market Hunter Gatherer stores. But other innocuous fronts are harder to discern. Storehouse, for example, appears to be secular until you click their affiliations with “like minded organizations” such as Soar Adventures, an initiative of the Scripture Union. Likewise,” Community First” turns out to be the work of the Russian Catholic Church. Interestingly there is absolutely no reference to this in the store and just a vague poster in the window to supporting sick children.

Any more op shops in inner Melbourne you'd like me to add to the list?

More posts on giving, ethics and charities

The christmas present conundrum.
The solstice giving experiment.
Who'd have thought volunteering would be so difficult?

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Saturday, May 12, 2012

palliative care

"Medical or comfort care that reduces the severity of a disease or slows its progress rather than providing a cure".

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