In less than 3 years the Circular Communities Scotland Reuse Consortium has provided approximately 11,000 items of quality reuse furniture, equating to over 500 tonnes diverted from landfill. Four local authorities are currently purchasing from the Consortium, using their Scottish Welfare Fund or other Council budgets to support people in need by providing essential household items.
In October, the Consortium reached the amazing and significant milestone of over £1million of public spending on reuse furniture. This money goes directly to the CRNS members – community based social enterprises the furniture – Castle Furniture and Furniture Plus in Fife, Second Opportunities in Renfrewshire, Instant Neighbour in Aberdeen and Stella’s Voice in Aberdeenshire.
“Second hand doesn’t mean poor quality – these items are built to last and often you wouldn’t even know they were second hand”. This was the feedback from the Homelessness team at Aberdeenshire Council in reaction to their experience of purchasing from the Reuse Consortium.
In the last financial year, Fife Council allocated 8% of their Scottish Welfare Fund budget to purchasing reuse furniture through the Consortium – around £186,000. They told us that this saved them a massive £104,000 over purchasing new items, enabling them to support around 200 more households in need.
Castle Furniture who, along with Furniture Plus, supply furniture to Fife Council, have been able to create vital training and job opportunities for local people. In a recent case study featured by SCVO, Gail Jackson of Castle says “This has provided a significant impact stream … allowing us to offer vital opportunities of work experience”.
To read more about the Reuse Consortium, download our Reuse Consortium Impact Report.