Want to spread a little holiday cheer? Those unwanted clothes in your closet aren’t a bad place to start.

From helping out military families struggling under the weight of the season to individuals who are on a strict budget, your charitable clothing donations go a long way. The United States is seeing a significant surge in thoughtful gestures, due in no small part to the prevalence of social media. One person who shares what they did for their downtown charity will later influence a co-worker who’s wondering how they can make the winter season a little warmer. If you’ve been pondering yourself on what you can do with what you have, look no further than the deepest recesses of your closet.

Here are just a few ways you can brighten up someone’s life with your unwanted jackets and jeans.

The holiday season isn’t always cheerful for everyone. Budgeting not just for rent and food, but gifts and car repairs can leave families in disarray. Your charitable clothing donations are incredibly helpful for taking off some of the stress of expensive purchases and leaving countless people in high spirits. The average American purchases up to 10 pounds of previously used clothing every year, according to recent estimates, and the average American woman wears far more outfits nowadays than a few decades ago. Your charity donations are one way of going against the tide and creating a positive ripple effect.

The environmental impact of clothing donations is becoming better understood the country over. Recent research revealed 12 million tons of clothing and textile waste is thrown out every year in the United States. The average person will generate nearly five pounds of trash every day. That’s over one and a half solid tons of waste annually! Even the most damaged clothing can be recycled and repurposed, which is more easily done when you reach out to charity donations that can do the rest of the work for you.

It doesn’t matter if your clothes are virtually new or filled with holes. They can be recycled and used to help stimulate the economy with useful materials. Nearly 100% of textiles can be reused, including latex, cotton, and spandex. Landfills remain one of the most hazardous additions to the environment, both for air quality and taking up useful space. When you look into helping military families with clothing donations you redirect all those essential materials away from landfills and back into the hands of those that can do far more good.

If it’s been a while since you’ve donated clothes, never fear. There are just a few tips you need to keep in mind when you rummage around in your closet. Gently used clothes include any clothing items that are free from tears, missing buttons, burns, stains, or holes. Clothes that are far too damaged can still be boxed up and sent to the nearest recycling facility to be turned into an eco-friendly addition. It also doesn’t hurt to call your local charity and ask if they have any in-demand items (those of which include coats, scarves, gloves, socks, and winter shoes for the cold weather).

Busy schedule getting you down? No problem. Helping military families, students, and couples on a budget is easier than ever with the aid of local donation pick ups. All you have to do is give your nearby charity a ring and give them simple directions to your place. You can then place all your unwanted clothes in a marked box or bag outside your door for them to grab at your nearest convenience. Helping families in need only takes a little drive and an extra hour or two out of your busy week.

The holidays should be enjoyable for everyone. Consider donating some clothes this winter for military families and keep your community in high spirits.