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Online auctions drive sales away from Maroondah op-shops

Sales have dived at op shops, with charity groups blaming the rise of online auction sites for a drop in the value of donated goods.

But while takings slide, Maroondah’s charity stores are still having the same amount of rubbish dumped on their doorsteps.

The Brotherhood of St Laurence Croydon store manager Darren Ryan said donations had decreased by 20 per cent.

He has managed the store for more than a decade and said the amount of rubbish was increasing.

“We used to get really nice bric-a-brac but anything really good goes to auction houses now,” Mr Ryan said

“If people are selling it themselves and donating us the stuff they don’t sell, we get a lot of junk, which is expensive to get rid of.”

The Brotherhood of St Laurence offers help to residents who are at risk of falling into poverty, including the elderly and refugees.

Mr Ryan said while the store generated less donations and had less income, it was still bearing the cost of taking away two skips of rubbish each week.

Both Salvation Army, which has stores in Ringwood and Kilsyth South, and St Vincent de Paul, with stores in Croydon and Ringwood, reported the same problem, with declining sales and costly rubbish removal.

Salvos Stores chief executive Allen Dewhirst urged residents to continue giving.

“The rise of online shopping and the use of eBay has had a significant impact on our business,” Mr Dewhirst said.

“Salvos Stores have noticed a considerable drop in the quality and the quantity.”

Are people being greedy by selling their goods online instead of supporting charity groups? Have your say at maroondah


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