At Southern New Hampshire University: 1,100 Residential Furnishings Provided to Communities in Five Countries

Situation:  With Southern New Hampshire University’s strong focus in the Environmental Sciences, disposal was not an option when the school replaced 240 sets of dorm furniture.  SNHU asked their recycling and waste management contractor, Casella Resource Solutions, to provide a better option, and Casella reached IRN for assistance.

Quantity and Composition:  1,029 pieces, including ~240 each of beds, desks, chairs and wardrobes.

Setting:  Suburban campus in Manchester, NH, 50 miles north of Boston.

Overview

Offering more than 20 Environmental Science degree programs, Southern New Hampshire University is one of the nation’s most dynamic schools in the field.  So when SNHU replaced some 240 sets of dormitory furniture, throwing the old pieces away was not an option.  The school sought assistance from their waste and recycling partner Casella Resource Solutions, and Casella’s Krysten Desmond in turn reached out to IRN.

IRN identified recipients for SNHU’s surplus, and over three days IRN filled nine shipping containers with SNHU furniture, destined for communities in five countries on three continents.

Composition

Implementation

Washington Hall has three stories plus basement, served by a single small elevator.  To keep to the project schedule, IRN carefully planned crew assignments to keep inventory flowing out of the building as fast as it could be loaded.

Nearly half of the inventory consisted of large, 300-pound wardrobes and wood platform beds with integral drawers.  These were both a blessing and a curse.  A curse because they were heavy, bulky, and could be moved down the elevator only one at a time.  A blessing because they quickly filled the shipping containers.  IRN placed a chair in most wardrobes, to maximize the piece count per trailer.

The SNHU project did not include mattresses.  Our charitable partner World Vision wanted to send a shipment of beds to Somalia, but only if mattresses could be included.  So IRN brought 75 mattresses from a concurrent IRN project in Boston, 50 miles away, and made up World Vision’s Somalia shipment.

Destinations

IRN’s longtime partner World Vision requested the entire inventory, then divided it among five recipient nations.  Of the nine trailers loaded, four were provided to communities in Mongolia, two to Armenia, and one each to Somalia, El Salvador, and Nicaragua.

Schools and families in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia received 438 beds, desks, wardrobes and chairs from SNHU’s Washington Residence Hall

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