St. Lawrence University, NY Reuse Initiative

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Type: Program

Status: Ongoing

Source File:


Did you upgrade to a suite and now you need some extra furniture? Don't like those overhead lights in your room and want something with a softer glow? Need to pick up some hangers, binders, mugs or other odds and ends for your new room?

Before you head to the store...check out the Reuse Basement.

A few years ago several students teamed up with the Conservation Council to work with Facilities Operations on a Reuse Initiative. The group of hard working, environmentally aware students were responsible for it- and they developed the "SLU Reuse Initiative" program that in their words is:

"...designed to eliminate the excessive amount of reusable items St. Lawrence currently places in landfills at the end of each academic year. It is designed to contribute to both the St. Lawrence campus and Canton Community. Our hope is to form a collaborative effort to place reusable items where there is need in the local community."

The Reuse Initiative has become so popular that we moved it from its ephemeral home in first one and then two tractor trailers to the basement of one of the dorms. Now all those great gently used items we collect when students move out can be found in the basement of Reiff.

Each spring when students leave campus volunteer staff collect gently used and working items of furniture, small appliances, computers, etc., and items of clothing that would otherwise have been dumped for waste. They are stored in the basement of Reiff and then sold for a very minimal fee the next fall.

While in previous years remaining items were donated to local charities, this year the hope is that students will want to organize and run a campus thrift store year round. Any students interested in such an initiative should contact Ruta Ozols or Louise Gava.

Funds from sales go towards helping the program continue.

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