By David F. Rooney
Thoughtless, perhaps even conscienceless, people are costing the Hospital Auxiliary Thrift Store a bundle when they dump what amounts to trash at the store’s drop-off area.
“These are things that should be taken to the dump,” said Thrift Store Manager Sheila Combs. “Who wants half a pool table — and a broken one to boot?”
Old TVs no one wants and that are impossible to sell, computer peripherals such as printers and scanners, a fax machine and other devices are all piled behind the store, located at Second Street ad Boyle Avenue.
“We couldn’t get rid of the TVs if we slapped a $2 sticker on them,” Combs said Wednesday. “As for these computer things… we don’t even have a computer so we don’t know if they work.”
All that junk — and there’s plenty of it — has been dropped off by people who are too lazy to go the dump, forcing the Hospital Auxiliary volunteers to haul it away. And that costs them money — over $1,100 last year — that could be spent on medical equipment for Queen Victoria Hospital or in grants to community groups.
And then there are the bags and bags and hags of dirty, ripped and useless clothes that should be at the dump.
“Our volunteers go through everything,” Combs said. “We look at every zipper, all the
buttons and pockets. This kind of thing wastes our time and efforts.”
This isn’t a case of Thrift Store volunteers being overly picky. The dumpster outside is loaded with unwashed and filthy used clothing that no one in their right could honestly think would be suitable for resale by the senior volunteers at the store, not that all the clean clothing is sold through the store. Most of it is bagged and put in a steel shipping container behind the store. When it’s full Ray Brosseuk picks it up and ships off to Africa or the South Pacific as charity clothing for people who literally have nothing.
But anyone who has visited the store knows that it sells a lot of good quality and clean second-hand clothes, crockery and other items. The store sells enough that the Hospital Auxiliary was able to donate $104,590.61 in funding to the following organizations:
- Community Connections Food Bank $9000.00
- Community Connections Infant Development Program $500.00
- Community Connections Children’s Summer Day Camp $550.00
- Revelstoke Community Foundation $2040.00
- Revelstoke Hospice Society $693.16
- Revelstoke Seniors Association $876.36
- Queen Victoria Hospital $90,431.09
That’s a tremendous service to the community, yet thoughtless people are forcing the Hospital Auxiliary to spend money on dumping charges. Last year the dumping charges amounted to $496 and the cost of transporting all the garbage people dropped off came to $637.75. The store’s regular thrice weekly garbage pickup cost $7,222.60. So far this year dumping charges have come to $259.25 and the transportation cost has come to $480.
On a lighter note, people drop off nearly incomprehensible items, too. One recent drop off was a pair of what appear to be blunt martial arts daggers in a leather case.
“We had no idea what they were,” Combs said.
This unusual kind of drop off aside, some people are using the Thrift Store as an extension of the dump because they are too lazy to take what amounts to garbage out to the dump. What’s wrong with this picture?
Come on people!