Diverting Useful Items to Homes Instead of Landfills
You often hear us talking about where we deliver the gently-used furniture (including mattresses) that you donate. We don’t spend as much time talking about where those mattresses and other furniture items might have ended up instead, but we make a tremendous impact in that arena as well. We save tons of furniture (literally) from ending up in landfills every year, and that makes a great difference for Cincinnati’s environment.
According to Facts and Figures About Materials, Waste and Recycling from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), “Furniture and furnishing include items such as sofas, tables, chairs, and mattresses… Generation of furniture and furnishings in MSW was 12.1 million tons in 2015… the majority of this product sector was landfilled (80.4 percent).” Among that startling amount are more than 40 million mattresses.
One or Two Mattresses at a Time
Early in 2019, we announced our Sleepyheads Campaign to help call attention to the issues on both sides of the bed. Putting the two challenges of keeping mattresses out of landfills and getting kids off the floor into a safe bed has resonated in the community. Every mattress counts for everyone involved.
The Multiplier Effect of Giving
The Seattle Times reported “In just one day at a local landfill, more than 300 old mattresses and box springs arrive for burial. If you laid them out end-to-end, they would stretch more than a third of a mile. And that’s just from one day… Old mattresses don’t go away easily. Mattresses are bulky, generally not reusable, and difficult to recycle. Even putting them in a landfill doesn’t work well.”
We may not be taking care of all 40 million mentioned above, but we have the potential to place as many as 2000 in good homes this year. Based on the quote above, that’s more than two miles of mattresses in homes of people who need them instead of taking up space in Cincinnati landfills. It’s a solid start.
If Your Mattress Is Too Tired
If your mattress is more than gently used and you know it has reached the end of its useful life, we encourage you to recycle it instead of dumping it. Because mattress recycling is such a detailed and difficult process, you need to find the right resource to ensure your not-so-gently-used mattresses get taken care of properly instead of ending up in a mattress graveyard, surfing on top of a precarious landfill. Our friends at Junk King know just what to do, and we hope you will contact them to recycle your fully-retired mattresses.
When You’re Ready to Donate
It could not be easier to donate your gently-used furniture and clean mattresses. Simply contact us or call (513) 313-0530 and we’ll schedule a pickup. It’s that easy to help the environment and families in need.