Community Forklift aims to turn the construction waste stream into a resource stream for communities in the DC region. Throughout December, we’ll be highlighting the work we do to support our neighbors and our staff. If you like what you see and want to lend a hand, you can make a financial contribution on our website. Your support is crucial to our work. Every gift, large or small, helps us lift up local communities through reuse.
Donated building materials are the cornerstone of Community Forklift: We couldn’t exist without them.
Although folks arrive at the warehouse daily to drop off building materials, about half of our donations are brought in by our truck crews. We operate two large trucks, which are on the road five days a week picking up reusable items around the region. These are items that would otherwise end up in the landfill, because they are too big or bulky for the donors to deliver themselves.
It’s a community service we are proud to offer, but about a month ago, one of our trucks died.
A portion of the donations brought in by our trucks go to our Home Essentials program, which provides materials and appliances to neighbors in need. For example, this summer we supplied window air conditioners and a stove to a local resident dealing with chronic illness. She was unable to manage the overwhelming summer heat until Forklift stepped in. As far as we know, there is no other program in the region that provides this kind of service.
“I just had open-heart surgery, and the doctors told me to stay in the air conditioning. I was taking the bus to the cooling shelter every day, but I still had to come home at night and sweat in my bed. My son moved in to take care of me, but he has asthma so he shouldn’t be in the heat either. I was also worried about my gas stove because half the burners went out and that’s dangerous. I was so grateful when you gave me those two ACs and a nice clean stove. I feel like I am back to life again, not just surviving.”
– 84 year old Home Essentials client
Our trucks are essential to our operation, and the donations they transport help keep our community giving programs running smoothly. Thanks to generous folks around the DC region, we always have a steady stream of donation offers. Our biggest challenge is keeping up!
Unfortunately, about a month ago, the engine in one of our trucks went bad. We try to work quickly so great items don’t go to waste, but picking up donations is one of our biggest expenses. And with a dead truck, it’s only gotten more expensive. We were able to sell the body of our old truck to recoup about $4,000, but a decent used box truck is going to cost us approximately $30,000. In the meantime, we have to use a very expensive leased truck until we can raise enough money to replace it!
Please help us stay on the road by making a donation. Each financial gift, large or small, helps us fulfill our mission to lift up communities through reuse.
Community Forklift is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit corporation. Donations are tax-deductible to the maximum extent allowed by law.
If you are a Marylander considering a donation this season, remember that we are participating in the Maryland Community Investment Tax Credit Program; a program that rewards Maryland taxpayers who donate to nonprofits that serve local communities. If you make a donation to Community Forklift of $500 or more, you can earn a Maryland tax credit of 50% of the value of your donation. This tax credit is in addition to Federal and State charitable tax deductions! You can reduce your tax liability while helping us lift up local communities!!