The Worlds Biggest Garage Sale - WBGS - About Us
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About

I have a dream, to sell my unwanted stuff for charity…

This is literally where it all started. Yasmin Grigaliunas did a spring clean and decided to hold a garage sale to sell the family ‘stuff’, then donate the money to charity.  She put the call out to her friends to see if anyone else wanted to clean out their homes.  They did!!  And so did their friends!!  Soon there were hundreds of people wanting to do the same thing, many of whom Yasmin had never met.  And before Yas knew it, the World’s Biggest Garage Sale was born!

Core Foundations…

Community

 

Community is at the core of World’s Biggest Garage Sale – and WBGS brings together people who want to make a difference without it having to cost a cent.  Spring cleaning and donating saleable items is free!  The coordination effort of our volunteers then manage the donations, attract bargain hunters, who then pay for their treasures, with all proceeds being donated to charity.  This is a cornerstone of WBGS!

Environment

 

Environment is key to the World’s Biggest Garage Sale’s reason for being.  The ability to encourage the re-use of goods in an ever-increasing throw-away society is incredibly rewarding.  We love being a catalyst for some goods not ending up landfill.  Whether it’s recycling, up-cycling or simply finding someone else’s ‘junk’ and making it your treasure, we are passionate about reducing waste and providing a treasure trove of choice not found anywhere else under the one roof.

Society

 

With quality items being re-used and sold at bargain basement prices, community members are engaged and contributing by donating saleable items and our volunteers are engaged and contributing their valuable time.  Our World’s Biggest Garage Sale coordinates and connects, with all money raised being donated to help QLD kids in need.  No one likes seeing a kid doing it tough, so we feel strongly that our WBGS event is a win for everyone!

A Brief History…

2013

Year

500

Floor Space (m2)

50

Volunteers

$15K

Dollars Raised

2014

Year

1500

Floor Space (m2)

150

Volunteers

$60K

Dollars Raised

2015

Year

4000

Floor Space (m2)

150

Volunteers

$88K

Dollars Raised

A Less Brief History…

yasmin grigaliunas and wayne swan

Early in 2013 Yas Grigaliunas decided to sell some unwanted items from her home in a garage sale, planning to donate the proceeds to charity.  At some stage throughout that process Yas offered to have her close friends and family donate goods to the garage sale.  Not long after, Yas’ 6m x 6m garage was full to the brim with donations, many from people she didn’t formally know.  And the World’s Biggest Garage Sale was born.

Yas’ garage was no longer suitable for the sale itself because it literally had so many donated items stored inside.  There was a tiny 80cm gap to walk through and donations were piled all the way from the floor to the ceiling.  Yas needed some space and she needed it fast!!   Yas was successful in sourcing the first foundation supporter, National Storage, who assisted without hesitation by providing some emergency last minute storage space.  The World’s Biggest Garage Sale finally took place at the local bowls club, with another foundation supporter, this time the fantastic team at MiniMovers, who chipped in to help move almost 2 full truckloads from Yas’ garage and various storage locations around Brisbane.

The sale was a success with over $15K raised on the day.  While barely fitting in the donated goods on sale, the bowls club was still ideal because it had great parking and kitchen facilities.  With a BBQ running from dawn till dusk and coffee, cupcakes and soft drink flowing, it all added up to a great event which was embraced wholly by the community.

Fast forward 12 months and planning for the World’s Biggest Garage Sale 2014 was well underway.   There was an air of excitement about as the donations came in at a scarily rapid rate.  Before the doors opened on sale day, the 2 MiniMovers trucks required from the last year had turned into 12 MiniMovers trucks!

With the additional donated items to sell, came the requirement for many more people to turn up on the day for some bargains.  The garage sale was again aided by some very community minded businesses.  Quest Newspapers, were incredible, providing many articles referencing us, our supporters and our volunteers.  Closer to sale day, GOA the outdoor signage experts came to the rescue with featured ads at 20 digital signage locations throughout Brisbane, and finally our favourite community radio station, 96.5 Family chimed in with some advertorial pieces on prime time locations.

Sale day was nearly upon us now at the new location of Our Lady of Assumption School in Enoggera.  A slightly different format saw us hold our first pre-sales event and unique item auction.  It was well patronised with hundreds of eager shoppers donating money to access the treasure trove earlier than normal.   Additionally the auction was also very successful and we were off to a great start having already raised $15,000 before the proper sale opened on the Saturday morning.

Finally the true madness sale day descended upon us.  Total numbers through the door for the day were over 2000, up from 500 the year before. And they weren’t disappointed either, with tens of thousands of genuine bargains up for grabs.   At the end of the day, the 150 volunteers who helped with set up, sorting, organising, planning, execution and clean-up, could proudly say they were involved in a single day event which raised almost $60,000!

2015 has now been run and won with increases in all key areas.  The new format was a winner with the 4000sqm warehouse concept going down a treat with volunteers and shoppers alike.  With 4700 shoppers through the doors between Friday night and Sunday night and a new benchmark of $88,000 raised, the World’s Biggest Garage Sale is rapidly cementing itself as a must-do event on Brisbane’s charity event calendar.  Bring on WBGS2017!

Our Current Benefactors…

The Courier-Mail Children’s Fund has been helping Queensland children in need since 1909. Established by Queensland Newspapers staff as a way to give back to the community, the Fund has evolved, expanding the number of children it helps across a more diverse range of issues while staying true to its original vision – to help Queensland children in need.

The Fund maximises its impact and efficiency by only directing its funds to registered charities that demonstrate that they have the specialist skills and knowledge to deliver high-value, life-changing programs to children in need. The World’s Biggest Garage Sale is excited to be fundraising exclusively for this wonderful fund because after all, nobody likes seeing any child doing it tough, especially a QLD one 🙂

Our Previous Benefactors…

smiling for smiddy logo

Smiling for Smiddy – Adam Smiddy was a talented triathlete and physiotherapist. Smiling for Smiddy is fighting the good fight against cancer in his name. You see, Smiddy isn’t here any more. He was cut down in his prime by an aggressive melanoma in 2006. He was just 26.

Chances are, you’ve seen for yourself how devastating cancer can be. Smiling for Smiddy’s goal is to do everything in their power to put an end to this. To date, the exclusive Smiling for Smiddy events have raised more than $5 million for Mater cancer research and support. [learn more]

mater foundation logo

Mater Foundation challenges, inspires and engages people, organisations and businesses to partner with the Mater hospitals and Mater Research, to extend the boundaries of health care and medical research.

Donations to Mater Foundation help purchase life-saving medical equipment, improve patient care and ensure our research teams continue to find better ways to diagnose, treat and ultimately cure life-threatening diseases. [learn more]

The future looks bright, #WBGS2017 – Date: 28th October 2017

The countdown to 2017 is on in earnest with most donation drop-off day locations/dates, collection opportunities and the sale date now available.  With more stock, more space and more energy than before, WBGS2017 will be an event to remember Brisbane.

Whether you want to shop on the day, shop beforehand, donate goods, volunteer your time or provide corporate sponsorship, there is something here for everyone and we need your help.  With our key benefactor being The Courier Mail Children’s Fund, however you choose to support will result in more funds being donated to help QLD kids in need; could there be a better cause?

We can’t wait to see you in 2017!

FAQs…

What is the world's biggest garage sale?

The World’s Biggest Garage Sale is an annual charity event, where all funds are donated to charity currently supporting cancer research. You can get involved by donating unwanted “saleable” items, volunteer and provide some man or women power or come along and purchase something on the day. Each role is as important as the other and brings a community together to support one another.

What charities does the event support?

For the past 3 evnts Smiling for Smiddy and the Mater Foundation have been the primary benefactors, however, in 2017 we’ll be fundraising exclusively for The Courier Mail Children’s Fund, which has been helping Queensland children in need since 1909.

How do I get involved?

Getting involved is easy and there are several ways to do so

  1. Donate unwanted “saleable” items. Find out more via our Donate Goods page
  2. Donate your time on our volunteer team. Find out more via our volunteer page
  3. Buy items online right up to the event via our online store or attend the event on the big day. Every dollar spent goes towards cancer research, so be sure to spend up big 😉

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