“I don’t want to throw this stuff out. I want it to go to someone who needs it. If only there were an easy way to get it to a good home!”
It’s a cry we’ve been hearing since Crossroads first started and, for nearly 25 years, we’ve loved helping people find a way to re-home their quality excess goods. In recent years, we’ve been seeking ways to use technology to do that job even better. In 2016, we began rolling out GoodCity, a series of apps which people can use to move things more easily across Hong Kong online. At first, the app was made available to donors only, giving time to refine and improve the service. Then, we invited social workers and NGOs to begin testing GoodCity too. We held several sessions at Crossroads Village (see photo) to hear more deeply of their needs, and to discuss how GoodCity can best help find goods for their clients and their own projects.
Mark Lo, CEO of United Social Services HK, was one of GoodCity’s early adopters, and has been trialing the app since 2018. He and his social workers serve elderly and other vulnerable groups throughout Hong Kong, regularly turning to Crossroads for help with furniture and household goods for their clients. He knows that some of their clients find it difficult to travel to Crossroads to choose what they need, because of age or poor health. “The app is so convenient,” he says. “Now we can just help our clients to search for what they need online. It’s really good!”
We’re excited to see GoodCity’s reach expanding rapidly to draw in more and more donors, social workers and NGOs, helping each other to place goods into the hands of people in need. “We all want to be good neighbours to those who are less fortunate,” says Matt Gow, the creative force behind GoodCity. “Together, we’re building a way for many more needs to be met. Not with millions of dollars, but with millions of small acts of kindness among neighbours.”