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Trash 2 Treasure Sale Celebrates 5 Years of Reusing, Recycling for Charity

Trash 2 Treasure Sale Celebrates 5
Years of Reusing, Recycling for Charity

by Maki Somosot '12i

trash 2 treasure 2011
Student volunteers help sort donated items for the fifth annual Trash 2 Treasure sale, taking place June 10-12 in the Lamb Miller Field House.

This weekend, Swarthmore's student-run Trash 2 Treasure (T2T) sale celebrates five years of collecting unwanted yet reusable items left behind at the end of the school year and then reselling them to the public. Typically, T2T raises $18,000-20,000 for non-profits in the area from the sale of an ever-increasing amount of student donations.

"Even with one pod reserved for furniture storage," says longtime T2T coordinator June Xie '11, "we've already begun to run out of room."

As in past years, the motley group of items includes furniture, books, toiletries, toys, school supplies, lamps, mini fridges, and even the occasional laptop.

Founded in 2007, T2T has grown significantly over the years. Xie says that the resulting "mix of volunteers" and personalities makes the process "fun and colorful." Despite being in charge, she describes T2T as a "very democratic project," where each volunteer is able to contribute ideas and suggestions.

"My advice to future volunteers would be to only participate in this project if you care about our mission statement, which is to raise money for charity while facilitating a greener lifestyle that advocates reusing and recycling," Xie adds. "If you don't believe in that mission and your heart's not in it, you're going to have a hard time having fun with it all!"

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. According to the organization's Ali Wimer Bashir, T2T has helped assist more than 80,000 people during its existence.