Kitchissippi Q & A: The urge to purge

Q: I know it’s garage sale season, but this is the time of year I get pretty fed up with the overflowing donation bin in the parking lot of the Dovercourt Recreation Centre. Can something be done about it? Who’s responsible for cleaning it out?

A: Well, I can’t disagree with you, it can be an eyesore, especially when little bits of garbage escape from the bin.  I asked John Rapp, Executive Director at Dovercourt, about it and he said admitted it does “get ahead of them” every spring.


Ottawa Neighbourhood Services reports that the Dovercourt bin is one of the most productive in all of Ottawa, and greatly appreciates the generosity of the local residents. ONS uses these donations to help families in need find clothing and other household items to set up their homes, often for the first time.

According to Rapp, ONS picks up the donated items every Friday and every Monday.

“It is the job of our supported worker Tom Seabrook to organize and clean the box for their pick up,” writes Rapp, in a recent email exchange about the issue.

“Tom takes great pride in his work, cleans out the garbage, bags and sorts loose items, and has received a commendation from ONS for making their job so much easier.”

The bin itself was upsized to deal with the volume about five years ago, and was donated to Dovercourt and ONS by Ottawa Home Improvements, and designed to match the building by Hamel Design.

Kitchissippi residents can collectively eliminate the “spread” of donations by doing the following:

  1. Not donating anything stained, broken, or missing pieces. (Ask yourself, would you use it? If not, it might be garbage.)
  2. Making sure the donation is contained in a sealed box or garbage bag to reduce spillage.
  3. If the bin is full, consider bringing the donation elsewhere. St. Vincent de Paul (1273 Wellington St.) and  the Salvation Army (1490 Richmond Rd.) are both nearby. You can also call the Canadian Diabetes Association ( to schedule a pick-up.

This time of year many residents clean out basements and closets, and get rid of yard sale remains. Let’s just agree to do it in a way that helps a local charity and keeps the area around Dovercourt’s bin a little tidier.

Thanks for your question,

Andrea Tomkins

Is there an issue in your corner of Kitchissippi that’s been puzzling you? Perhaps there’s something you’ve always wanted to know but didn’t know who to ask. Send your burning questions (Kitchissippi-related of course) to us and we’ll help find the answer.


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