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Goodwill Buy The Pound Maine

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goodwill buy the pound maine

Headquartered in an industrial park area on Hutcherson Drive in Gorham, Goodwill NNE has additional offices in central Maine and New Hampshire, with retail stores sprinkled throughout the three states.

In Maine, Goodwill manages 23 residential homes throughout the central and southern part of the state, for adults with an acquired brain injury, an intellectual disability or other barrier to independence that requires the support of Goodwill staff.

Goodwill manages AmeriCorps programs that strengthen communities in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont by placing volunteers in local nonprofits, municipalities, and schools. These AmeriCorps members support the long-term health of communities through their selfless commitment, according to Goodwill.

Goodwill NNE created GoodTech, a program where its trained staff refurbishes donated electronics. Donated computers, phones, game systems and peripherals all must pass strict testing guidelines before being sold in the retail stores or online. Not only does GoodTech keep electronics out of the waste stream, it creates jobs for people in the local community by training them in the skills needed to test, repair and recycle all electronics.

Store staff accept lightly-used clothing, household items and electronics. Donations are made at the stores. The donation bins that used to be found at businesses and strip malls throughout the area, were removed as Goodwill found that people were leaving items that could not be sold in its stores.

Clothing items that are unsuitable for sale are repurposed into Goodwill Wiping Cloths, eco-friendly cleaning cloths for at home and in the workplace. These washable, reusable wipes are absorbent, more durable than paper towels, and available in different fabric types- sweatshirt, color t-shirts, white t-shirts, flannel and terry cloth.

Municipalities ensure that their residents have a collection site or event that will take these "covered electronic devices" for recycling. Some collection sites charge a small fee to help cover their costs of operation. Households, elementary and secondary schools, and small businesses and non-profits are responsible for bringing their e-waste to a collection site or event.

Few local businesses are as inherently green as Goodwill Industries of Northern New England, the Portland-based social services agency that resells items that otherwise would be thrown away. But 10 years ago, it looked like Goodwill's retail monuments of reduce-reuse-recycle might not survive. Few of Goodwill's two-dozen northern New England stores were profitable. They lacked consistent branding, customer service quality or merchandise.

Getting the retail stores in line was a priority, since the stores consistently fund Goodwill more than any other single source of revenue like grants or service fees. (Last year, $29 million of the $63 million budget came from retail revenue.) The retail stores anchor funding for Goodwill's network of more than 60 work force, residential and rehabilitation programs serving more than 100,000 people in southern and central Maine.

So in 2003, Goodwill hired Randy Finamore, L.L.Bean's former operations manager for corporate liquidations, who as a longtime Goodwill board member, had watched the stores' slow decline. Finamore set about counteracting what he refers to as the organization's "general malaise" by first making the store interiors look alike. Signs were printed rather than hand-written and merchandise was displayed in the same way, as Finamore says, "to align a vision that would look to the customer that she was in the same store." Finamore closed remote, underperforming stores and opened locations in shopping centers with more foot-traffic; and codified customer service guidelines to address complaints about some stores' shabby service. He also made sure each of the stores offered the same type of goods, at the same price, including brand-new items like hats, gloves and underwear. By 2006, Finamore's strategy had worked. The stores were profitable again.

The 106,000-square-foot Gorham Distribution Center opened in February and is key to the company's goal of eliminating its waste completely. From the outside, Goodwill's streamlined central warehouse looks as faceless as a big-box store, just a plain white cube atop a neatly mowed hill deep in a Gorham industrial park. But, inside, the warehouse hums. About 100 employees scuttle between rows of towering steel shelves to the beeping and buzzing of forklifts and the gnashing of a 15-foot bailer crunching metal castoffs like typewriters, bed frames and chairs into tangled cubes for salvage buyers.

Last year, of the more than 35.7 million pounds of goods donated to Goodwill's shops in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont, 38% was sold back to customers, 41% was sold to recyclers, and 21% was thrown away. It's the part that's thrown away that bugs Goodwill employees like Finamore. He sees that waste as not only bad for the environment but also bad for the bottom line.

Goods are diverted from the dump in several ways at the distribution center. Goodwill sells to salvage buyers in metal, plastics, glass and even stuffed animals for about 25 cents a pound. And thanks to increased recycling efforts over the past year, the nonprofit system-wide has cut in half its trash cost as a percentage of retail revenue from 2.4% to 1.2%. The distribution center also stores collectibles and books to be sold for a premium on websites like Amazon and eBay.

Purchases are weighed on large scales built into the floor and priced by weight. The heavier the load, the cheaper the per-pound price. The Buy-the-Pound facility currently sources from five Maine and New Hampshire Goodwill stores and will likely add three more locations by the end of July.

Goodwill's turnaround is due in part to point-of-sale metrics standard in mainstream retail. Under Finamore, the company began gathering hourly, daily, weekly and seasonal data on total sales and donations by square footage and type of product. "Now we have a sustainable model that we can [use to] predict the business," says Finamore. "We can predict the sales, we know how much we're getting in donations, and we know how much labor it takes because we've tracked that year over year."

Goodwill's emphasis on reduce, reuse and recycle might be most apparent at the Gorham outlet, but the philosophy starts at its Portland headquarters. In September, Goodwill hired Anna Eleanor Roosevelt, granddaughter of Franklin and Eleanor, as president and CEO, based in part on her work greening Boeing as its vice president of corporate citizenship. Roosevelt had become committed to sustainability after a World Business Council for Sustainable Development report showed that the world's population will require the resources of two Earths by 2050 if the current rate of consumption continues unabated.

Roosevelt has called upon Goodwill's board to add a sustainable approach to company management to the strategic plan, which means considering the impact of every decision on the environment, the community and the bottom line.

According to Vice President of Public Affairs Jane Driscoll, integrated sustainability within the company means encouraging its 1,700 employees to find symbiotic internal solutions to problems. For example, job coaches in Goodwill's work force programs would be encouraged to place clients in one of Goodwill's other commercial ventures.

A typical goodwill thrift store is set up much like a small department store, with shelving, racks of clothing, end cap displays, etc. At many goodwills, the store is decorated and certain sections are artfully arranged.

Five tips to avoid getting bedbugs from thrift shopping:1. Learn what to look for so you can spot the telltale signs of bedbugs on items in a store, and if you see them tell a manager and leave.2. Only buy items that can be sanitized or washed.3. After shopping at the Goodwill outlet or another thrift store, place your purchases in a nonporous bag in your car such as garbage bags or plastic totes4. If you live in a warm climate, leave your purchases in your car for a few days in the sun to zap any bedbugs with heat- one of the few effective pesticide-free treatments for bedbugs.5. Take items from the plastic bag directly to a washing machine and wash items with hot water. To be extra careful, use a laundromat and an extra hot wash to be sure.

To rectify this we put together this Goodwill Outlet Locator list which will tell you the location of every single Goodwill Outlet that we could find, state by state. As well as a bunch of tips to help you be successful once you finally get there!

Anna Barton sorts items at the Goodwill of Northern New England warehouse facility in Gorham on Tuesday March 23, 2021. Last year, the nonprofit spent more than $1.2 million throwing trash away. That's a 155 percent increase over what it spent in 2015. (Troy R. Bennett / BDN)

Workers sort thousands of pounds of donations from at the massive Goodwill of Northern New England warehouse facility in Gorham on Tuesday. In 2015, Goodwill of Northern New England threw away 10,531,000 pounds of bad donations and that figure nearly doubled over the next five years. (Troy R. Bennett / BDN)

Mile Lampron sorts items at the Goodwill of Northern New England warehouse facility in Gorham on Tuesday. Last year, the nonprofit spent more than $1.2 million throwing trash away. That\u2019s a 155 percent increase over what it spent in 2015. (Troy R. Bennett \/ BDN) 041b061a72

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