An Angus charity will begin 2021 with new drive as it continues the turnaround in fortune from challenges which once threatened its existence.
Furniture Recycling Project Angus will hit the road in a new van provided by Easter Hatton Environmental through the Scottish Landfill Communities Fund.
It is a welcome boost for the Arbroath-based organisation, which aims to divert furniture and white goods from landfill for re-use across the district.
The pandemic has presented challenges in maintaining the charity’s usual level of provision, but manager Elaine Duff said the new van would be a huge asset to their work.
Support for people setting up home
In recent years the project saw demand for starter packs of household goods for vulnerable individuals or families rocket.
It still fulfils purchasing orders from Angus Council to help people set up home.
A key focus is now on the recycling of furniture and other items, with increasing numbers coming through the door to pick up a bargain.
In the past year, the success has seen more than 50 tonnes of household goods diverted from landfill.
A re-use room providing material such as wool and art materials for crafters also proved a success during the easing of lockdown restrictions and the charity hopes that will stay in place when guidelines allow.
“The van is fantastic for us, but it has come at the end of what has still been a very difficult year,” said Elaine.
“We have tried to maintain our service as best we can and I think we ended the year feeling that we have done that.
“What we must continue to try to get out is the message that we are open to the public.
“It is nice to see that there are more people using us and we feel that we are a really worthwhile charity.”
Plea for more volunteers
The organisation would also like to get its name better known in the hope of attracting helping hands.
“We started up again in July, but there were volunteers we weren’t able to bring back because of the coronavirus situation,” added Elaine.
Fresh restrictions have extended the festive shutdown beyond the January 4 re-opening the project had been planning, with sights now set on January 18.
“We are always looking for items to recycle, and always looking for more volunteers,” added Elaine.