One of my co-workers and I recently attended an International Council of Shopping Centers conference in Phoenix, Arizona. It was the Retail Green/CenterBuild conference attended by architects, professionals in the lighting field, contractors and shopping center developers and managers.
The purpose of us attending this conference was so that we could reach out to people in the shopping center industry who might wish to add to their bottom line by hosting a shoes and clothing donation bin on their retail shopping center property. We pay a fee each month to the shopping center owner or manager for providing a convenience to their community.
Let’s face it; most people don’t want to go too far out of their way when it comes to donating shoes and clothing. Convenience is everything. So many moms (who generally clean out closets for husbands, kids and themselves) drive around with bags full of donations in the back of their cars. When they don’t find a bin they inevitably take the donations out of the car and put them in a garage. Our goal is to place as many bins as possible for DARE America, our main non-profit partner, so that donating shoes and clothing is easy and convenient for everyone, and so donations don’t end up taking up space in the garage.
For each bin we place we pay DARE America a monthly fee. It’s a win-win-win situation for the retail shopping center owner/manager, for DARE America to fund their programs working to keep kids drug and alcohol free, and for World Wear Project. We get the shoes and clothing we need for our customers in developing nations. The last winner in that equation are the people living in developing nations who need affordable clothing.
If you’re a retail shopping manager or owner, please contact us to discuss how we can increase your bottom line by hosting a shoes and clothing collection bin on your property.
Here in the warehouse of World Wear Project the guys were recently unloading a trailer full of institutional clothing which had arrived from out of state. Somehow over the din of the forklifts moving about and the honking of the forklift horns, someone heard the mewing of a cat.
Thank goodness they heard the mewing of the cat; otherwise it could have been a disaster, for the cat and the contents of the trailer.
The guys gingerly moved some of the bales around and were able to corner the cat which had been in the container for some 5 days. She was skinny, hungry and very thirsty. Members of the office crew got her some cat food, some water, a nice warm cardboard box and some warm rags to nestle in. It all ended up with Charity the cat being adopted by one of our employees. A potential “catastrophe” avoided!
Along with a co-worker I attended the IAEM Conference in Las Vegas in November. IAEM stands for International Association of Emergency Managers. World Wear Project attended the conference because we’d like to be the go-to company for those who need to deal with what frequently happens after a primary disaster.
After a disaster, well-meaning and generous people from all over the country donate shoes and clothing to those families who’ve been displaced by an unfortunate occurrence such as a fire, flood, hurricane or tornado. How this becomes a secondary disaster for the organizations working with the donations is that the community is inundated with so much in the way of donations that they can’t deal with all of it. They frequently lack storage space, and a lot of manpower is diverted from the primary disaster to handling the secondary disaster of administering the level of donations received. Sometimes the clothing becomes mildewed or damaged in some way and ends up in local landfills.
(AP Photo/Dave Martin) Read the article by the Associated Press.
Photo: Volunteers sort through donated clothing at a warehouse full of donated goods for tornado victims in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.
Many people affected by the disaster would prefer to have money so that they can purchase new items. This spending at local stores helps the community get back on its feet. We want to make these types of things possible by responding to the call for help by collecting the massive amounts of donations and turning them into available funds to be distributed to the community. We’ve got our own fleet of trucks so we can truck the donations away without tying up the trucking needed for the local area. We can help by keeping all those donations out of local landfills. Volunteers are freed up to help with the recovery effort, and storage facilities are available for other purposes.
We reached a lot of people in the emergency manager community with our message during the conference. In fact on the Disaster Zone blog on the Emergency Management website, author Eric Holdeman blogged about what we can provide he titled Avoiding the Landfill. We’re members of the IAEM and we’re here to help in a disaster.
KFDX 3 News has shared several stories of our recycle bins placement in Wichita Falls, Texas for our D.A.R.E. partner.
The recycle bin placed back in October 2011 outside Harvest Drug & Gift off Kell Freeway was so successful 3 more bins were brought in. To watch the video and read about what our recycle bins are doing for the Texas D.A.R.E. Association visit the KFDX 3 Texomas website.
World Wear Project was a sponsor for Truck Time at Congregation Shearith Israel for November 2011. We were on Channel 8 Good Morning Texas to promote the event.
We’ve entered into many partnerships with local private schools in the D/FW metroplex. Some of the schools have athletic shoe recycling bins, some have the larger 4’ x 4’ metal recycling bins, and some schools have both bins. It’s a great way to raise funds for your school if you host bins on your campus. We are paying the schools an initial donation and making a payment each month for the shoes and/or clothing collected. These monies are going to fund many programs and projects at the various schools with which we’re working. Our bins look really great and are decorated with the logo artwork for each school. Just got an e-mail from a school today that said the bins, which were recently delivered, were the talk of the school.
We would love to work with your school, church or community organization. It’s an easy way to support your school, and provides a steady stream of income throughout the school year. It also provides affordable clothing to some of the poorest people on the planet. We’d also love for your group of students to come visit our plant to get a feel for how much we have, and have to get rid of, and how it can be shared with people around our world.