This month the Woodstock ReStore is celebrating its 4 year anniversary. Since opening its doors in 2013, this store has seen immense growth and support from the community – from daily donations to an influx of volunteers.  To mark this occasion, we sat down with Regional Manager ReStore Operations, Barb Ransome to find out exactly what the last four years have looked like.

Q: How has the community reacted to the ReStore? Has the location worked well?
A: The community has been amazing! We have had great support from donors, shoppers and volunteers. They are what have made the store a success!

Q: How many donations do you see on average a week?
A: We pick up 16 to 24 donations each week with our truck. There are also donations being dropped at the store on a regular basis – average of 8 per day.

Q: Initially you were accepting new and gently used renovation supplies, with plans to eventually accept electronics for recycling. Has that plan been realized?
A: We do have an e-waste bin on site and accept donations of electronics. We often tell people we are happy to take electronics, both working and non-working. Either way it helps Habitat as we do earn a little money from e-waste collected. As well, our e-waste bins are processed and materials recycled right here in Ontario.

Q: How many volunteers and paid employees does the ReStore currently have?
A: Woodstock ReStore started with one paid manager and a very good group of volunteers. Quick growth allowed us to hire a part-time person who very quickly moved to fulltime. Four years later we have three full time, three part time and over 30 regular volunteers.

Q: Is there a demand for volunteers?
A: There is always a demand for volunteers whether it is in the store, on the truck or doing salvage work. We understand that volunteers are sharing their experience, knowledge and time with us and acknowledge that we could never do what we do without them.

Q: What exactly is “Salvage” and how does that program work?
A: If a home owner is doing a renovation, replacing a kitchen or even tearing down a house or building, Habitat can send a team of volunteers in to remove kitchen cabinets, lighting, wood – anything that is salvageable and sellable at our ReStore. There is no cost to the home owner. We offer a tax receipt for items removed. Our volunteers can take the time to remove items without damaging them.  It diverts waste from our landfills. It gives other home owners a less costly means to renovate. It helps Habitat and therefore helps give a hand up to the families we serve. A win for all!

Woodstock ReStore is celebrating its anniversary with in-store deals all week, leading up to a community barbeque on Saturday May 27, 2017. They are located at 1058 Parkinson Rd, and are open Monday-Wednesday 9 am-5 pm, Thursday 9 am-6 pm, Friday 9 am-5 pm, and Saturday 9 am-4 pm.