Things You'll Need
You have made the switch completely to DVD, and you have no use anymore for those old VHS movies you have collected over the years. The good news is that you can get rid of those old movies without sending them off to sit in a landfill. You can donate them to local businesses, retirement homes, and churches. These places will either sell them to raise money for their own programs, or they will use them as in-house entertainment. But, before you take them anywhere, you have to get them in shape.
Clean the VHS tapes thoroughly. These tapes have probably been sitting in the attic or in the basement for years and have built up a nice layer of dust and dirt and may have even seen a mouse or two, so you want to make sure to wipe the tapes down with a clean, dry rag. This will remove any dust, dirt, or rodent leftovers.
Fix up the cardboard cases. Because these movies have been around for so long and have seen so much use, many of the cardboard cases the tapes come in will be torn and/or bent, so you will want to grab a roll of scotch tape and get to work taping the tears. If you come across a case that is bent, you can usually bend creases in the opposite direction to correct the problem. You will not remove the creases entirely, but the case will look a little better.
Pack the tapes in small to medium cardboard boxes. The best boxes to use for VHS tapes are paper ream boxes, but you can use plain cardboard boxes as well. The reason for the smaller boxes is so that the load is not so heavy; you do not want this to be a painful experience, and the people to whom you are donating the tapes will appreciate the easy-to-carry boxes.
Load the boxes into your car and head off to the nearest Salvation Army Store, which uses 100% of the money earned through selling your unwanted stuff to support their adult rehabilitation programs, retirement home, or church. Each of these places usually has a special area for donations clearly marked; however, if an area is not clearly marked, you will want to walk in and ask someone where to take the video tapes.
Be nice. Don't take damaged tapes to donation. These tapes are your responsibility, so if there are some that are badly damaged, dispose of them properly. Wear gloves when cleaning where rodents have been.
Mike Johnson teaches writing at Kalamazoo Valley Community College and Western Michigan University. He wrote Writing Across the Curriculum content for Western Michigan University's Best Practices site. Johnson graduated from Western Michigan University with a Master of Arts in English and a Master of Arts in educational technology.