Please see below for COVID-19 updates
Worthmore is both a Free Store available to students during the academic year and a reuse collection program during move-out.
Worthmore Free Store
**Note: Worthmore is closed for the Fall 2020 semester due to COVID-19**
The Worthmore Free Store provides access to room furnishings and other supplies for students who may otherwise face cost or transport barriers in obtaining such items. Complementing this social mission, Worthmore aims to reduce waste by fostering a culture of reuse and preventing unnecessary purchases. As a “free” store where all items cost $0, Worthmore offers an alternative economic practice that challenges students to think creatively about resource sharing. It is located in the basement of Willets Hall.
Weekly open hours are hosted by student interns. Please see our FAQs below for up-to-date information for each semester. Donations can also be brought to the store during these open hours.
At the end of every spring semester, we also open up more extensive donation opportunities in residence halls during our move-out program.
Worthmore Move-Out Program
Students leave a lot of stuff behind when they move out of residence halls at the end of the academic year. In 2017, for example, Worthmore collected over 4,700 hangers, 100 lamps, 80 trash cans, and 60 fans. In order to prevent these items from being thrown in dumpsters (and incinerated at the Covanta incinerator in nearby Chester, PA), Green Advisors and Worthmore student workers collect donated items from designated res hall lounges across campus.
Donations are then sorted into two categories. Items that are frequently needed by students (e.g. hampers, hangers, lamps) will be brought to the Worthmore Free Store. Other items will be donated to charities through our off-campus hauler, GreenDrop.
Your efforts to transport and sort your own items in residence hall lounges show respect for the time, effort, and safety of our EVS staff, Worthmore student workers, and GAs. Click here to learn more about the donation drop-off locations.
Please take a look through our FAQs and Worthmore sub-pages for more detailed information, especially about the move-out program.
- When is the Worthmore Free Store open & where is it located?
Weekly open hours are hosted by student interns. Donations can also be brought to the store during these open hours. Worthmore is located in the basement of Willets Hall.
- How do donations in residence hall lounges work during spring move-out?
Typically, at the end of every spring semester, we open up extensive donation opportunities in residence halls during our move-out program. Students are asked to bring all re-usable items to designated lounges, typically on the bottom floor of each residence hall, and sort items into pre-marked areas that are set up during finals.
We need everyone’s participation to take responsibility for your communal spaces.
- Do not remove tape or move lounge furniture back into taped areas. This will negatively impact the EVS staff and student workers in your building.
- If it’s really trash, do not donate it!
- ALWAYS fold cardboard boxes before recycling.
- When/how can I donate to Worthmore?
During the academic year, items can be brought directly to the Free Store in Willets. Typically, During spring finals ONLY, we set up special donation sites in residence hall lounges in order to manage the extremely high volume of donations that we typically receive during move-out.
Residence hall donation sites are set up around finals and are typically held open for around a week. We can't be exact with the days because both setting up and breaking down the nearly 30 sites takes the Worthmore team a few days on each end.
- What can I donate to Worthmore?
When deciding whether an item can be donated, be practical and respectful! Do not donate items that are unhygienic, contain any personal identification, or are against College policy (e.g., candles).
During move-out, please place all donated items in bins in the correct designated area. For example, clothing goes in the large, GreenDrop cardboard box. Learn more here about which items will and will not be accepted as donations during move-out. The Free Store also accepts a more limited number of items year-round during weekly open hours.
- What is the history of Worthmore?
Worthmore began with the move-out of Spring 2017, replacing the Trash2Treasure summer sale that operated from 2007 to 2015. Due to a combination of factors, we decided to discontinue Trash2Treasure and to consider alternative means to make use of the items students leave behind. Because the sale took place over the summer, Trash2Treasure was formerly inaccessible to most Swarthmore students despite selling items that students really need. By saving items for the Free Store, we hope to help the needs of incoming and returning students. Furthermore, the previous model for the sale required hundreds of volunteer hours on the part of staff and significant funding to pay student workers. By using any lounge as a collection point (instead of our now more limited designated areas), the previous system left EVS staff with the burden of transporting, sorting, and separating donations from trash.
- Who is involved in managing Worthmore?
Worthmore is primarily run by students (the move-out manager, end-of-spring move-out workers, and Green Advisors), with ongoing support from Environmental Services, the Office of Student Engagement, and the Office of Sustainability. Key contacts are:
Chip Proctor, EVS Manager of Administration