The Best Places to Donate Your Used Phone (Master list updated for 2017)
Not sure where to donate your cell phone? Find the charity that’s right for you on this comprehensive list
Americans throw away more than 152 million phones each year, contributing to a rapidly-growing e-waste problem that threatens the environment as well as the health and safety of the people, plants, and animals that depend on it for survival. You know you can keep the toxic chemicals found in cell phones from infiltrating our soil and water by selling it via Flipsy.com, but what if you have a greater purpose in mind than simply cashing in on your used stuff?
Instead of selling or even recycling your phone, you can donate it to a charitable cause. By doing so, you not only get to save the planet, you get to save people (plus, your donation might qualify as a tax write-off). We’ve added to our previous lists of places to donate cell phones (here and here) to create this master list of charities that accept phone donations.
The Charitable Recycling Program
Recommended by Clark Howard, The Charitable Recycling Program doesn’t serve a single cause. Rather, it recycles phones and donates a portion of the proceeds to any charity you’d like. You can make an individual or group donation, sign up to become a collection partner, or choose from more than 100 charities the program already donates to.
Ebay for Charity
Choose from more than 16,000 charities, select an amount to donate (between 10 percent and 100 percent of your sale), then list your phone on the popular auction site. When it sells, your selected charity will receive your donated funds.
Through its Recycle & Reward program, Veterans Advantage collects and recycles used phones, then uses the proceeds to provide additional benefits and discounts for active military members, veterans, and their families.
Recycling for Charities
Like some other organizations on this list, Recycling for Charities will recycle your donated phone and donate the proceeds to your charity of choice. You can choose from their large list of charities, or sign up your own favorite charity to benefit from cell phone donations.
Rainforest Connection puts your phone to good use by incorporating it into a communications infrastructure designed to protect endangered rainforest habitats from illegal logging and poaching. When rainforests are threatened, advanced communications quicken response times. If your phone cannot be used in the field, Rainforest Connection will recycle it and use the proceeds to support its program.
Books for America
Books for America will sell your donated phone, then use the proceeds to buy books for children.
Donates up to $30 per phone to domestic violence shelters. Donate more than nine phones, and a local shelter will benefit.
Cell Phones for Soldiers
Recycles used phones and turns the proceeds into cost-free phone cards for overseas U.S. soldiers.
Sell fast and donate the cash
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American Cell Phone Drive
Find local organizations that accept cell phone donations from American Cell Phone Drive’s database of more than 4,000 charities nationwide.
Uses the proceeds from recycled phones to fund Medic Mobile efforts in mobile-ready countries.
National Coalition Against Domestic Violence
Sells used phones and uses the proceeds to combat domestic violence.
Operated by Verizon, HopeLine refurbishes used phones then loads them with airtime before giving them to domestic violence victims. If your phone can’t be used it will be sold and the proceeds will go toward funding the cause.
Second Wave Recycling
Proceeds go toward the cause of your choice, including charities related to the military, environment, and children. Nonprofit organizations can launch their own cell phone donation fundraisers through Second Wave Recycling.
Cell Phone Bank
Refurbishes phones and gives them to law enforcement and victim support agencies to provide victims with emergency communications.
Uses the proceeds from recycled phones to provide LifeStraws which eliminate bacteria and viruses from any water source to provide clean drinking water in global regions plagued by waterborne illnesses.
Secure The Call
Provided refurbished phones to senior citizens as well as victim support and law enforcement agencies to provide emergency communications.
The Julian Center
Provides emergency phones to victims of sexual assault and domestic violence. If your phone cant be used, it will be recycled and proceeds will go toward victim services.
Donate to your favorite charity or set up a phone drive for your school, church, or non-profit organization. Also works with corporations to create phone drives for preferred charities.
Proceeds from donated phones are used to purchase care packages for U.S. troops serving overseas. Care packages include food, toiletries, entertainment items, letters of appreciation, and more.
Gospel for Asia
Sells donated phones to fund missionaries, operate schools, and provide Bibles and livestock to needy villages in Asia.
Teen Challenge of Arizona
Uses the proceeds from donated smartphones to help people overcome life-controlling problems.
Pairs text-to-speech software with donated phones to help blind children interact and learn with technology.
Pick Up Please
Picks up your used phone for free, then uses the proceeds to provide benefits via Vietnam Veterans of America.
Local, regional, and other charities
Want to donate to a cause that’s not on this list? Search online for cell phone donations by your location (city, county, region, or state) or by cause. If you can’t find the right cause for your donation, you can always sell your phone for cash via Flipsy.com, then donate your payout directly to your preferred charity.
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