Club News – Press Release, Community & International Service
When Northwest True Value Hardware eliminated a product line approximately two years ago the wheels started turning on a project that would impact the lives of individuals in our community as well as internationally.
The product line eliminated was made up of hardware such as screws, wall plates, door knobs, hinges, grid shelving, brackets, hooks, and much more. Valued at close to $300,000, according to Northwest True Value Hardware President Charlie Overstreet, the business was interested in finding a use for the items outside their marketplace.
An employee, who is a member of the Rotary Club of Salem, introduced the idea of shipping the hardware into impoverished areas in countries such as Central or South America, and the two year journey began.
The Rotary Club of Salem partnered with the Rotary Club of Roanoke-Downtown and began seeking options to ship the 20 skids of product. Due to the price of shipping and customs fees the Rotary Clubs were not able to arrange shipment alone. They began looking for other partnerships to make it possible.
Goodwill Industries® of the Valleys warehoused the product, while another avenue for distribution was determined. Gleaning for the World was identified and contact was made with the organization, which is headquartered in Concord, VA. With a purpose of providing urgently needed and life-saving support to communities in critical need throughout the world, the organization was a perfect partner for the project. Gleaning for the World works with corporate donors to collect surplus medical and other essential supplies which are then distributed where humanitarian help is needed worldwide.
“Gleaning for the World receives many product donations a year. This is the first time to receive hardware from a local company. It is extremely generous! The need for this type of donation is immeasurable,” states Rev. Ronald Davidson, Gleaning for the World, President & CEO. “Working in disaster situations worldwide, building a school in the Dominican Republic for 500 impoverished children, building a center of religion in Guatemala, and other construction projects makes the need for this product even more valuable. It will save the nonprofit’s funding by not having to buy these items. Therefore, we will help the nonprofit ministries reach more children with the funds they have. Basically, having these supplies is trading hardware for children’s lives.”
In order to get the product ready for shipping, Goodwill Industries® of the Valleys was contracted by the Rotary clubs to palletize the product. Through this contract, revenues were generated to support Goodwill® training and employment programs that help youth, adults, and seniors get back to work and gain greater independence in Goodwill’s 31 county, 13 city service area in Virginia.
The partnership between the local Rotary Clubs, Northwest True Value Hardware, and the two area non-profits is driven by Rotary’s Guiding Principles for Avenues of Service, including:
- Community Service encourages every Rotarian to find ways to improve the quality of life for people in their communities and to serve the public interest.
- International Service exemplifies our global reach in promoting peace and understanding. We support this service avenue by sponsoring or volunteering on international projects, seeking partners abroad, and more.
The product was picked up up by Gleaning for the World at Goodwill’s Melrose Jobs Campus in Roanoke on Tuesday, June 17th at 11am. Representatives from Gleaning for the World and the local Rotary Clubs came together at Goodwill as the shipment was transferred, to mark the end of the two year project.