We all have them: ill-fitting, uncomfortable, or just plain unflattering bras that sit in the back of our drawer collecting lint. Instead of keeping those over-the-shoulder boulder holders mothballed, or worse, consigning them to the dumpster, consider “recycling” them to raise money for breast cancer research. In conjunction with Breast Cancer Awareness Month, several nonprofits around the world are collecting your unwanted underwires to sell or donate to women in need. Millions of women across the globe are going commando not by choice but because they can’t afford proper support garments, so consider this a two-for-one opportunity—you help a well-endowed sister feel her best and you give the search for a cure a much-needed boost.
Photo by Zoom Zoom
BRAVA FOR BRAS
In the U.S., you can donate your unwanted bras to The Bra Recyclers, a division of Bosom Buddy Recycling, based out of Arizona. The charity collects and sorts the bras, then ships them off to partner locations nationwide in support of breast cancer survivors and women in transitional shelters. Since October 2008, The Bra Recyclers has collected tens of thousands of bras, backing 23 organizations across the country. And when you donate your unmentionables this month, you’ll be automatically entered to win great prizes, including gift cards from American Express and intimate-apparel companies.
Millions of women across the globe go commando not by choice but because they can’t afford proper support garments.
For would-be bra donors in the U.K. and Australia, a number of retailers and organizations have partnered with BCR Global Textiles, a family-run outfit that recycles and reuses textiles. BreastTalk, Butterfly Bras, Curves of Ireland, and Down Under-based Berlei are all collecting your unwanted bras and funneling them through a BCR Textiles program.
For every kilo of skivvies collected, BCR donates money to breast cancer charities like the Breast Cancer Campaign. The bras are then sold to small independent retailers in third-world countries to shore up the economy while providing low-cost foundation wear.
If you’re planing on organizing a clothing-swap party this month, ask your girlfriends to bring their clean, good-condition bras so you can make a joint donation. Bra recyclers are looking for all manner of bra sizes and shapes, including maternity, nursing, post-surgery, sports, and plus sizes.