Xavier Magazine

Emptying Dorms, Filling Homes

As part of the overall development of the University that is coming about as a result of the To See Great Wonders capital campaign, the Brockman Residence Hall, which was built in the 1960s, underwent a substantial renovation this year. In addition to substantial renovations, such as a new air-handling system and better handicapped accessibility, the renovation included new carpeting, paint and furniture for the building. 

In keeping with its efforts throughout all of the recent development, the University placed a strong emphasis on recycling as much of the materials as possible during the renovation—including furniture. According to Stacey Decker, assistant director of campus services, Xavier donated about 35 mattresses, bed frames, dressers, desks, chairs, clothing armoires, couches, end tables, refrigerators and stoves to MAP Furniture Bank of Columbus.

“We knew we would not be reusing this furniture and someone else here at Xavier had worked with this organization in the past,” says Decker. “So we figured it could go to help someone trying to get back on their feet who would really appreciate it and put it to good use.”

MAP Furniture Bank provides free furniture to central Ohio residents dealing with severe life challenges ranging from previous homelessness to mental disability. Nearly 80 percent of the people the organization serves earn less than $10,000 a year and 95 percent earn less than $20,000 a year. All of their clients are unable to properly furnish their homes. MAP Furniture Bank helps them improve their quality of life and turn their empty houses into homes.

After working with social service agencies, Jeff Hay wanted to help people interested in improving their lives and founded Material Assistance Providers Inc. in 1998. MAP acts as a valuable community partner by preventing usable materials from being sent to area landfills. If all of the furniture items collected and redistributed by MAP in just the past year were piled onto a one-acre plot of land, that pile would be 23 feet deep.

“We genuinely appreciate the opportunity to partner with Xavier in recycling used furniture,” MAP president James Stein says. “It provides much needed assistance while preserving limited landfill space.”

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