Trash 2 Treasure Raises
Record Amount for Local Non-Profits
by James Wright '13
The fifth annual Trash to Treasure (T2T) event provided a bounty of spoils for those lucky enough to make it to the Lamb-Miller Field House earlier this month, with enough donated goods to cover the entire field house floor. Even on the third and final day of the sale, an impressive array remained on display. With items from a chain mail bikini to couches to choose from, few shoppers left with empty hands.
But the fundraiser is the culmination of months of hard work and long hours from the student volunteers. Planning began in April, though the (quite literally) heavy lifting could only begin after classes let out and students vacated the dorms. Then teams of volunteers had the arduous task of picking up goods from the donation sites set up in every dorm lounge and from the houses of nearby faculty and staff, then arranging and sorting the goods in the squash courts before moving everything to the field house.
"There are always a few nights with little sleep and a couple moments when you say to yourself 'why am I doing this?'" says coordinator June Xie '11, who helped organize the sale each of her four years on campus. "But I know in the next five minutes I won't feel the same way, and the sale is always worth it."
Indeed, this year's sale ultimately raised $22,276, topping last year's total by more than a thousand dollars. All proceeds raised go to the United Way of Southeast Delaware County, which promotes the health and well being of the community and citizens of southeast Delaware County.
Even as the sale wound down, the volunteers still had more work in front of them. A large number of goods remained despite a deal where shoppers were able to pay $5 for whatever they could fit into a trashbag. Some items were already earmarked for further donation, such as clothes to Goodwill and mattress bedding to an organization aiding Haitian migrants in Philadelphia.
Looking forward, Xie hopes that Swarthmore does not lose the event. "It's just been so good for the school and community," she says. "I hope the student body will continue to step up and run and contribute to T2T."