As the fresh scent of spring fills the air, many individuals embrace the tradition of spring cleaning. Goodwill stands as a viable option for those looking to declutter and give back, but it's important to remember that not everything can be donated.

With a mission to empower individuals towards personal stability, Goodwill Northern New England goes beyond just accepting donations. They offer a range of support services, including healthcare, workforce development, and cleaning. While they're grateful for donations that make a difference, it's important to keep in mind that there are certain items they can't accept due to legal, safety, and liability reasons. 

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Here's Goodwill's "Cannot Accept List" in Maine:

  1. Air Conditioners or other freon-containing appliances
  2. Ammunition or Weapons
  3. Large Appliances: Items such as stoves, ovens, refrigerators, dishwashers, and other “large appliances.”
  4. Automobile Parts
  5. Baby Equipment
  6. Bed Pillows
  7. Used Bike Helmets
  8. Bunk Beds
  9. Chemicals
  10. Construction Debris
  11. Large Standing Copiers
  12. Large Exercise Equipment: Items like treadmills, Bowflexes, elliptical machines, and other large exercise equipment.
  13. Fishing Tackle
  14. Flammable Liquids/Gases
  15. Food
  16. Damaged Furniture
  17. Futons
  18. Hazardous Wastes: Items such as lead-acid batteries, paints, fuels, solvents, oils, or equipment containing these substances.
  19. Hospital Beds
  20. Humidifiers
  21. Used Lightbulbs
  22. Liquids: Goodwill cannot accept any kind of liquid, including lotions, chemicals, lamp oil, or any other liquid substance.
  23. Mattresses, Box Springs, Waterbeds
  24. Medical Assistive Devices
  25. Pharmaceuticals
  26. Pianos and Organs
  27. Recalled Items
  28. Smoke Detectors
  29. Swing Sets
  30. CRT Televisions
  31. Used Venetian Blinds
  32. Wall-to-Wall Carpeting


While Goodwill Northern New England is committed to accepting donations to support their mission, it is important to be mindful of the items they cannot accept. By adhering to this list, you can ensure that your donations align with Goodwill's guidelines and help them continue their valuable work in providing opportunities for personal stability and growth within the community.


In Maine, it's not hard to find businesses, restaurants, and shops with great customer service. It could be we are that way because of the many tourists that visit us. Or it just might be our stubborn Yankee roots that we like to treat people the way we want to be treated.

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