[Source: This Week Community Paper]
Goodwill Columbus and Ohio State University's Office of Student Life have partnered to give students a way to responsibly dispose of their unwanted materials as the fall semester ends.
The BuckeyeClothesOut encourages students to place clothing, household goods and electronics in one of 24 bins set up on or near campus.
"We always see that students have a lot of things to dispose of at the end of a semester," said Dave Isaacs, manager of communications and media relations at the Office of Student Life. "We're trying to reduce the amount of that material that winds up getting dumped at the landfill."
The President and Provost's Council on Sustainability has approved a goal to divert 90 percent of the university's materials from the landfill by 2030, he said.
For the BuckeyeClothesOut, students are encouraged to place their unwanted items in one of the marked, unmanned donation bins, Isaacs said.
"We've put the bins in many of our residence halls and in other prominent locations on or near campus," he said.
The university has informed students of the project through social media and posting signs around campus, Isaacs said.
"We expect as students complete their final exams and begin leaving campus that we'll start to see a lot of material being put in the bins," he said.
For Goodwill, the partnership will help provide additional items it can sell in its retail stores or recycle, said Tim Salvato, senior vice president of retail operations.
"A lot of the items students will donate will be in good enough condition that we can sell them in our stores," he said. "Electronics that are not salvageable or clothes that have a rip in them, we can still use to recycle."
In 2013, Goodwill's donated-goods retail business generated $9.2 million for its annual budget, Salvato said. Goodwill recycled 5.9 million pounds of donated goods not sold in stores, generating another $1.2 million.
"Put together, those funds represent about 25 percent of our overall budget," he said. "Our retail stores and recycling program help us fulfill our 75-year mission of transforming the lives of individuals with disabilities and other barriers."
Anyone can donate goods to Goodwill at any of its six retail stores and 14 donation centers located throughout central Ohio, Salvato said.
For more information about the donation program and Goodwill's retail stores, visit goodwillcolumbus.org.