"One man's trash is another man's treasure" is a phrase that isn't going well for Works of Mercy, a non-profit organization that gives to the Alice residents in need by providing gently used clothing and other household items.
All of the items given away by the organization are donations from the public which are sorted and put out for residents to choose from.
Items are usually donated by drop offs in front of their location or in the alley by their back door. Lately, Works of Mercy volunteers have received large amounts of items they can't put out to donate which causes them to waste time and fills the drop off area with trash.
Volunteers Joann McAda and Debbie Donaho said the public is treating their drop-off as a garbage disposal.
"We're here to give to the community members in need and we do our best to keep it clean here," McAda said. "People don't consider the fact that we can't fix or wash anything that comes through here. We just sort through it and put it out here."
Items that have been dropped off include empty helium tanks, dressers without drawers, broken chairs and clothes with holes or stains.
"If you won't put it back on your body, we can't use it," Donaho said. "If you want to get rid of it, you can take it to the landfill for free. It's tiring for the few volunteers we have here."
McAda said Works of Mercy depends on money donations mainly from churches and individuals.
"We pay bills here and we are volunteers. Some people think that we are just being picky, but it's for the safety of the residents we help here," she said.
To receive assistance, Alice residents can take a bag of clothes every three months when they show proof of residency. Works of Mercy also gives food to elderly in need with the same requirements. The center, located on 409 E. Main St., is open Tuesday and Thursday from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
The organization accepts gently used or new clothes, shoes, bags, toys and household items.
"We're glad we can help the community and all donations are appreciated," they said. "It's just not nice to be dumping this junk here that we clearly can't use."