Lifting Up Communities: The Home Essentials Program

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.



Community Forklift provides home repair supplies and other household essentials free-of-cost to families and individuals through our Home Essentials ProgramEvery time you shop at the Forklift or donate to us, you help us provide free building materials, fixtures, appliances, and furniture to local families and neighbors in need. 

Appliances are one of the most commonly requested items from our Home Essentials Program.

Thanks to your support this year, we’ve donated $38,000 in materials to low-income households, the elderly and disabled, and people going through crisis (like a house fire, or flood). Home Essentials is a low-barrier service, meaning we try to keep our grants as accessible and flexible as we can. Client are referred to us through a variety of ways- caseworkers, neighbors, government agencies, etc. One organization that has sent us multiple folks is Friendship Place, in NW DC.

Friendship Place is a leader in Washington, DC, in developing solutions to homelessness that have proven results and a lasting impact. Their innovative, customized, person-focused programs empower participants to rebuild their lives, find homes, get jobs and reconnect with friends, family and the community, permanently. They have a lasting impact on the lives of more than 2,900 people a year through street outreach, drop-in support, a free medical and psychiatric clinic, case management, transitional housing, permanent supportive housing, rapid rehousing, job placement, and specialized programs for veterans and their families.

“Our mission is to empower people experiencing or at risk of homelessness to attain stable housing and to rebuild their lives. Our vision is a DC community and a nation in which every person has a place to call ‘home.’

Here is where Community Forklift overlaps with their work, as we also seek to help our clients reclaim and maintain their dignity at home, no matter their situation. Division Director Kally Canfield brought one of her clients to us recently:

“He is formerly homeless and was in desperate need of new furniture items as he did not have many and his apartment was rather bare. We were able to get him some photos for his walls, some lamps and night stands for his bedroom, and small little table and chairs that fit perfectly in his dining area. We also were able to get him some nice decorations for his house as well. His spirits are so much higher now that he has items in house to make it feel more like a home. I can see it impact his emotional and physical well being.”
-Kally Canfield, Division Director Veterans Services Division, Friendship Place

Staff photo, courtesy of Friendship Place.


Please give us a lift 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!!

For more info on the tax credit,

please visit our website or

call our office at 301-985-6011.

Thank you!