Gaia Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Is Gaia a non-profit organization?

The Gaia Movement (Gaia) is approved with IRS as a non-profit environmental 501 c3 organization. As a non-profit, Charity Navigator rates Gaia to 93% (

Is the Gaia Movement legit?

The Gaia Movement (Gaia) was incorporated with the IRS in 1999 as a non-profit organization and has had this legal status all of the years we have operated. Gaia is in good standing with the state of Illinois and Kentucky. Gaia also has a business license with city of Chicago. All our clothes collection boxes are placed legally and with the required permits.

Why does Gaia sell the donated clothes instead of giving them away?

Gaia does the same as all other clothes collectors by selling the items collected. Gaia differs by selling the majority to Central America, where they supply good quality clothes and create necessary jobs for impoverished communities to help build up their economy. A portion of our received items are donated in-kind to food pantries, homeless centers, and shelters in the local Chicagoland area.

How much does Gaia donate to charity, how much goes to fundraising and how much to administration?

80% of Gaia’s funds go directly to charity. There have been concerns that very little of the money The Gaia Movement raises goes to charitable purposes. That is completely false. Gaia’s main program to keep used clothes and shoes out of the landfills provides necessary funds to apply 80% directly to charity, 7% to fundraising, and 13% to administration.

What local organizations does Gaia support?

The Gaia Movement supports many organizations in the Chicagoland area. We support churches, homeless centers, food pantries, and shelters. Some of our partners include Shiloh Hospice & Palliative Care, Broadway United Methodist Church, Pilsen Food Pantry, Above & Beyond Recovery Center and Food Pantry, Southwest Chicago Homeless Services, and Connections for the Homeless!

Is my Gaia donation tax-deductible?

Yes, your donation is tax-deductible. You can get a tax receipt by calling Gaia 773 651 7870.

How long has Gaia been around?

The Gaia Movement started in March 1999 in Chicago as an environmental non-profit organization approved by IRS as a 501(c)(3) organization. The main mission is to keep textile out of the landfills, as well as supporting other environmental projects around the world and educating people about environmental issues.

Is the Gaia Movement linked to other organizations?

The Gaia Movement is an independent non-profit organization and is not linked to any other groups or organizations. Some for-profit clothes collectors are members of SMART (Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles) where they exchange experiences:
As of now there is no similar organization for non-profit recyclers like the Gaia Movement, Goodwill, Salvation Army and others.

Is the Gaia Movement connected to Green City Project?

The Gaia Movement is a registered non-profit organization. Green City Project is a for-profit company. The two are not connected in any way. It is a mistake on Google’s side that the two are sometimes mixed up.