The Waste Not Center enables teachers and nonprofits to obtain materials that otherwise would be unaffordable, recycling $250,000 worth of materials each year.
The Central Ohio Sustainability Alliance (COSA) supports organizations and communities throughout central Ohio to help strengthen the economy and the ability to cope with environmental challenges. To achieve its goals, COSA utilizes education, outreach, and partnering activities.
For the past 20 years, Columbus-based COSA has provided a location for the community to donate items including office and art supplies to be reused. This Waste Not Center receives supplies from retail stores, offices, professional organizers, and community recycling events. “We’re open one afternoon a week. And in that period of time we will take in and distribute about 2,500 pounds of materials that would otherwise most likely go to the landfill,” explained Neil Drobny, executive director of COSA.
Approximately 2,000 artists, teachers, and nonprofits working with children and the elderly have access to these recycled items. A paid membership allows them to take whatever items they can use.
A grant from Subaru of America Foundation will help the organization focus on getting more involvement from the Columbus public school system, which has low membership and teachers who could make good use of the recycled items. The grant also will provide seven schools with a free membership for the entire staff, allowing the teachers access to the recycled materials.
The center is limited by the amount of space the organization can rent to warehouse donations. Its staff would like to have a larger space that could host workshops to demonstrate how some of the recycled items could be used.
For more information about COSA and the Waste Not Center, go to www.cosa-oh.org.
Subaru of America, Inc. believes in supporting the communities in which its employees live and work. To that end, Subaru builds community partnerships with organizations that share its drive and passion.