12 Things Your Local Women’s Shelter Desperately Needs

Women’s shelters are safe and secure spaces for women to take refuge. Unfortunately, these facilities can face understaffing and underfunding issues. Support organizations by donating these 12 things your local women’s shelter desperately needs.

Hygiene Products

Basic hygiene is essential to everyone’s lives. Bathing, grooming, and dental care protect our bodies from germs and infectious diseases. They also prevent people from spreading germs to other individuals. Personal hygiene helps everyone keep their body healthy and clean.

Unfortunately, some women may not have access to hygiene products. Donate must-have items such as body wash, antibacterial soap, and deodorant to shelters.

An alternative to donating individual items is to donate kits. These packs can include soap, dental products, and grooming supplies.

Feminine Hygiene Products

Feminine hygiene products are crucial to women because they maintain cleanliness during menstruation. Without items such as tampons, pads, pantyliners, or wipes, women are more vulnerable to urinary tract infections.

The infection happens when bacteria enter the urethra and infect the urinary tract. This occurrence can cause painful urination, pelvic discomfort, and lower abdomen pressure. All this to say, it’s a painful infection no one wants to encounter.

Fortunately, feminine hygiene products support vaginal health, so women need access to items. Pick up extra boxes of products the next time you visit a store. Then, donate them to your local women’s shelter.

You can also host a feminine hygiene product drive to collect several items or money to purchase products! Either way, you’ll help organizations.

Hair Care Products

Shampoo, conditioner, detangler, gel, and hairspray are all hair care products. Donate items to women’s shelters to help women maintain their hair. Please keep in mind that there are different hair textures. Women need products that align with their hair type. For example, people with curly hair benefit from moisturizing, frizz-free products.

Although you can’t cater to every specific hair texture, you can purchase a variety of products. Women can sort through items and use the ideal products for their hair.

Don’t forget about children’s shampoo and conditioner. Mothers can wash their kid’s hair with the appropriate products.

Bras and Underwear

Bras and underwear are two necessities people overlook when donating to women’s shelters. Donate garments in various sizes and styles to help women in your community. Remember that sports, plus-sized, and nursing bras are also necessary.

Along with undergarments, women’s shelters also appreciate new socks. Purchase wholesale socks in bulk so that you can donate an assortment of sizes.

Laundry Detergent

Clean clothes are essential to everyday life. Fresh clothes give women (and their children) the comfort they deserve, boosting confidence and self-esteem in all settings.

It’s important to acknowledge that clean clothes are vital when seeking jobs, housing, and other services as women rebuild their lives.

When you donate detergent, you will want to select sensitive or fragrance-free options because many children have allergies. Additionally, not everyone enjoys heavily-scented detergents.

You can donate fabric softener and dryer sheets along with detergent. Think about your laundry essentials and donate similar items to women’s shelters.

Bonus Tip

Some women’s shelters don’t have washers and dryers. While donating laundry supplies, contribute rolls of quarters to women. This way, they can wash their clothes at local laundromats.

Diapers and Wipes

Many women in shelters are also mothers who need diapers and wipes for their babies. Diapers and wipes are expensive, and some women have to re-use disposable diapers because they’re low on supplies. This is dangerous to children because it increases their risk of contracting infections from fecal matter (poop).

Help moms in need by donating diapers and wipes. Both moms and babies will appreciate the products! Consider purchasing different-sized diapers to accommodate various children. For example, size 1 diapers are ideal for babies 8 to 14 pounds, and size 3 diapers are suitable for babies 16 to 28 pounds.

Public Transportation Cards

Many women in women’s shelters don’t have vehicles that allow them to commute throughout their area. And some destinations are too far to walk. Luckily, there is a smart solution! Load up public transportation cards and distribute them to shelters assisting women. They can keep appointments, make it to job interviews, and have access to various facilities.

Depending on your location, public transit may be a popular mode of transportation. For instance, major cities such as New York and Chicago have many public commuters.

Look at the costs of rides and load cards with an appropriate amount of money. $5, $10, and $20 cards can make a huge difference in someone’s life.

Old Mobile Phones

Everyone needs access to communication, and cell phones are the most common devices people rely on. That said, your local women’s shelter desperately needs mobile phones. In case of emergencies, women with phones can call 911 for help. They can also contact family members, social workers, and other important people.

Mobile phones are necessary for job hunting too. Employers need a callback number for job interviews or to relay messages to applicants. Some women’s shelters can activate and distribute old mobile phones to women.

Phone cards allow people to make calls without requiring a phone plan. If you have old cell phones, consider donating them to the shelter.


Purses are more than just stylish—they hold personal belongings. Most women’s shelters have shared spaces for women. With limited privacy, misplacing things such as state IDs, wallets, cell phones, and money is easy. These are valuables people use daily. If you have old purses, handbags, and wallets, consider donating them to your local shelter.

Cosmetic Products

Makeup and beauty products may seem frivolous, but they greatly impact some women. For many people, wearing makeup is a confidence booster. Being in a women’s shelter is challenging, and gaining a sense of normalcy can help women.

Whether they’re going to a job interview or touring housing facilities, cosmetic products can make them feel secure and confident. Donate new face moisturizers, eyeshadow pallets, lipsticks, mascaras, and other important self-care items.

Cool Idea

Are you a makeup artist? If so, consider volunteering your time at a women’s shelter. Host makeup tutorials. Some women will appreciate a chance to learn how to apply certain products and create amazing beauty looks.


Donate blankets, sheets, pillows, and crib sheets to your local women’s shelter. The facilities are safe places to sleep, but they may lack linens. People deserve a good night’s rest with comfortable bedding. You should purchase new bedding because most shelters don’t accept used linens. It’s also best to collaborate with staff to determine the facility’s exact needs.

Nutritious Food

Women’s shelter serves meals and snacks to women and their children. Support the shelter with nutritious food. Frozen and fresh fruit, vegetables, whole grain bread and pasta, eggs, fiber-rich cereals, and oatmeal are great contributions.

You can also donate non-perishable products such as pasta sauce, crackers, peanut butter, dried fruit, and nuts. Consider giving no-sugar-added juices to accommodate low-sugar diets.

There’s never a wrong time to help those in need. Refer to this list before donating items to women’s shelters.

12 Things Your Local Women’s Shelter Desperately Needs