Re-use organisation of the Year nomination
About the charity:
ReFurnish collects donations in the form of furniture, appliances, clothes, books and bric a brac and sells them on at low costs whilst also offering 20% discount to those in receipt of any form of benefits and suffering financial hardship. Not only does this help to alleviate poverty and help those just starting out refurnish their homes at a faction of high street prices, but it also encourages and promotes recycling and reuse. All electrical appliances are PAT tested on site. Reducing the amount of items taken to landfill and helping the environment. Not only has this reduced waste, but we have also provided employment in the local areas where in which our shops are based, as well as training opportunities and volunteer placements. We currently have 107 volunteers and counting and we offer placements for those on probation to help with community service. Our Dartington branch The ReStore also upcycles pieces of furniture showcasing how a seemingly dated piece can be brought back to life, and offers a place for local artists to sell their items.
What the charity achieved in 2016/2017:
Aside from continuing to reduce waste going to landfill, we currently have 107 volunteers and offer placements and employment opportunities. We most recently saved three shops from closing across Devon. Working together with David Winter from SMR Phoenix, ReFurnish will be taking on the SMR Phoenix shops in South Molton, Barnstaple and Bideford. Much like ReFurnish, SMR Phoenix share many of the similar values, by promoting donation and recycling we are all working towards a better environment for the future. It also allows us to offer these items at a low cost to those currently suffering financial hardship and a sense of community. Due to ReFurnish’s success and self-sufficiency we have been able to capitalize on our charities success and come to the rescue of SMR, without our help they would have definitely had to have gone into administration. By saving these shops we can continue to spread the ReFurnish ethos within each community and now countywide. We are proud to have saved staff from losing jobs some of whom, working for over seven years, SMR has become a huge part of their lives! Whilst they will be under the umbrella of ReFurnish, they still will retain their individuality.
Why this matters:
Not only does it showcase how far ReFurnish has come and continues to grow and expand. But if ReFurnish was not making a difference and working within their communities individually and together as a whole they would not be able to take on more shops. The success of the charity proves that recycling, donating and supporting communities’ works. By providing a free collection service we are reducing landfill waste whilst often helping those who cannot afford to get rid of unwanted furniture or those less able to remove the furniture themselves. By providing low cost items we are supporting those starting in new homes, relocating or that haven fallen on hard times, enabling them to furnish there home with nice items in turn promoting positive mental wellbeing. By providing training, placements and employment we are putting back into the community. We hope that not only can we continue what we are doing but by rescuing SMR Phoenix and working with them, show to any other likeminded charities that there is support out there for them but initiatives like ours can and do work.
To learn more about the charity, visit their website: https://www.refurnish.org.uk/
To vote, go back to the awards page (with the logos of each charity) and scroll down to the bottom of the page and select the charity you think deserves this award and click Vote!