I visited the Habitat for Humanity ReStore on Pacific Court in London today. What an amazing social enterprise story! This store opened in 1995 and run by community volunteers and some paid staff who serve our community in so many ways.
1. Homeowners can donate gently used materials that can be resold at affordable prices. Their teams can help people tear down, rip out or load up their donations.
2. Renovators, contractors and manufacturers can donate excess materials that can be resold at discounted prices.
3. Items that cannot be sold are recycled in a way that is great for the environment and maximizes the returns for ReStore in a way that helps fund their building projects.
4. They partner with many nonprofits including Pathways, Women’s Community House, LifeSpin, Mission Services, and many more to help their clients or employ the people they serve.
Habitat for Humanity’s Vision is to create: “A world where everyone has a safe and decent place to live”. ReStore helps Habitat achieve that vision in two ways: a) they help people meet the expense of renovating and/or repairing their homes in a more affordable way, giving them a decent place to live; and b) all excess proceeds from the store go directly towards building homes for families in need.
Habitat London funds 100% of all administrative costs through the operation of the ReStore.
Meeting Gerry and his staff & volunteers today was encouraging and helped me see how beneficial a social enterprise can be to a nonprofit, to a sector and to an entire community.
If you are a nonprofit leader, social entrepreneur or local business and are interested in more information about social enterprise please contact me.