On May 15-16 University of Iowa students and members of the community once again came together to help with the annual Year-End Move-Out Donation Drive. As UI students and their parents loaded cars and trucks with personal belongings, volunteers were happy to help carry and collect unwanted items that could be reused.
Andrea Uhl, graduate student of urban and regional planning, coordinated move-out collection spots at residence halls Quad, Burge, and Mayflower, and partner collaboration with Goodwill Industries, Habitat ReStore, The Crisis Center of Johnson County, and City of Iowa City teamed up with UI Housing, Office of Sustainability, and student volunteers from ECO Hawk, UI Environmental Coalition, and the Saucy Nancy women’s ultimate frisbee team to make the event successful.
The efforts of the two-day event collected appoximately 9,500 pounds of reusable furniture, clothes, and food. That’s nearly five tons of refuse diverted from landfills.
Although it was two long days of sweating, hefting, and lifting “with your knees, not with your back!”, the efforts were a great help to both the community and the environment. Every item that would have taken up limited space in a landfill was reused instead.
This was Andrea Uhl’s third donation drive since she set it up through her Sustainable Systems class here at the University in 2011. The drive was started not only to give back to the local community, but also to help divert usable items from being thrown away. By providing students with an easy and accessable way to avoid the dumpster on move-out day, the event acheives both of these goals, and helps create a greener earth and a healthier community.