DEAR SAVVY SENIOR: Where are some good places to donate old senior living equipment? My father passed away a few months ago and left behind several canes, a wheelchair and walker, along with a box full of old glasses and two hearing aids. — Donating Debra

DEAR DEBRA: Donating old, unused senior (or assistive) living equipment is a wonderful way to help those in need who can’t afford it, and in most cases its tax-deductible, too. Here are some good places to check into.

Mobility Equipment: There are many foundations and organizations that would be more than happy to receive your dad’s old wheelchair, walker and canes. Local charities such as Easter Seals, United Way, American Red Cross or the Muscular Dystrophy Association are all great options to check into, as well as independent living centers (see to find one near you) that help people with disabilities. Local hospital foundations, children’s hospitals, school districts, veterans’ service organizations and even churches are also good places that often accept these types of donations. Or, you could donate to your local Goodwill or Salvation Army.

Eyeglasses: One of the best places to donate old eyeglasses is the Lions Club Recycle for Sight program. They collect nearly 30 million pairs of glasses each year and distribute them to people in need in developing countries. To donate, look for a Lions Club glasses donation drop-off box in your community. You can often find them at libraries, community centers, churches, schools and many local eye doctor offices, or contact your local Lions Club for drop-off locations. Call 800-747-4448 to get the number to your state Lions Club office, which can refer you to your community representative, or visit

New Eyes for the Needy (neweyesfortheneedy. org) is another good organization that collects unused eyeglasses and distributes them abroad to people in need.

Hearing aids: To donate old hearing aids, hearing aid parts or other assistive listening devices, check out Hear Now (, 800-648-4327), a nonprofit program that’s part of the Starkey Hearing Foundation. They collect about 40,000 hearing aids each year, have them reconditioned, and resell them using the revenue to buy new hearing aids for people who can’t afford them. Hearing aids and other assistive hearing devices should be sent to: Hear Now, 6700 Washington Ave. South, Eden Prairie, MN 55344.

Another great place to donate is the Lions Club Hearing Aid Recycling Program. Old hearing aids should be mailed in to one of their 21 regional hearing aid recycling centers. Your state Lions Club (call 800-747-4448 to get the phone number) can give you the mailing address, or go to

Other local service organizations that may accept hearing aid donations are Sertoma, Knights of Columbus, Masons, Kiwanis and Optimists clubs. There are also some states, cities, counties and even local groups that have collection programs. Contact your Area Agency on Aging (call 800-677-1116 to get your local number) or the nearest Hearing Loss Association of America chapter (see to inquire.

Don’t forget that donations to nonprofits are tax-deductible, so when you drop off your donated item, be sure to ask for a receipt for your tax records. Or, if you’re mailing it in or are using one of the Lions Club drop-off boxes, you’ll need to include a note requesting a letter of acknowledgment of the donation. Your note should include your name and a brief description of what you donated, along with self-addressed stamped envelope.

SAVVY TIPS: If you have other assistive devices or daily living equipment you’d like to donate but can’t find a home for, contact your state assistive technologies director (see They typically accept a wide variety of aids or may be able to refer you to groups that do. Or try, a free listing service website that lets you donate, sell or buy used aids.

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit