How Challenge100 Works
We invite recipient charities and businesses with clearance needs to join Challenge100 and become part of our redistribution pool.
MANAGED ETHICAL CLEARANCE
We remove redundant office furniture and equipment from businesses, ensuring a clear footprint ready for site handover.
school in a box
A School in a Box shipment is made to a charity or school. We record every item’s journey and its second life helping young people around the world.
sharing the story
We keep in touch with each charity. The information we receive is shared in a legacy report for every business that supports Challenge100.
What is School in a Box?
School in a Box (SIB) is the international programme Waste to Wonder embarked upon in 2003. Since it began, we’ve sent hundreds of 40 foot containers filled with used office furniture and equipment donated on behalf of our customers, from their clearance projects.
Every item donated through the Waste to Wonder process is sent to our redistribution pool. We match them to schools and charities in need around the world and have achieved staggering results. In total, we’re proud that over 900 schools in 19 countries have been supported so far.
47 SIB Donations
We were able to send 47 School in a Box containers filled with reusable furniture.
We achieved a Waste to Wonder record market value of goods redistributed during 2020.
100 SIB Donations
We aim to more than double the results of 2021 and send 100 School in a Box containers.
We aim to double the market value of goods redistributed this year, making a substantial difference to disadvantaged young people.
“Our partnership started with Waste to Wonder in 2003 when they sent their first School in a Box to us in Romania, after being introduced by the Rotary Club of Brackley. Through their customers’ donations, we’ve equipped a full school, from computers to desks to chairs to cabinets – everything that was needed was provided.
Prior to these donations, the schools here had such old, broken and even dangerous furniture, so these items with school supplies were extremely useful. Together with the Rotary club, they also sent kits for training young people in sowing, woodwork and mechanics. It’s been a truly amazing collaboration.
Over the years we’ve kept in touch and recently we became also social enterprise. We aim not to just hand out charitable items to people, but we try to teach them ‘how to fish’. Our aim is through vocational training, to help people get a job and provide for their families.
Waste to Wonder comes in perfectly because they send us second hand furniture that’s dismantled. We put it together with the young people here: they learn joinery, they learn remedial work, and some is repurposed to make them suitable for our needs, such as singular desks for COVID compliance.
We get a lot of tabletops so we build houses, homes for families and we use table tops to make panels for the walls and even for the foundations.
Before the pandemic, we relied a lot on volunteers but for the last six months, the School in a Box donations that have kept us going. Thankfully we received three containers of new furniture in November. We gave out supplies to families and part of it we’re selling to support the salaries and cover the costs of our charity work.”
Watch the FAST Romania Project
Challenging The Perception of Waste
A Letter from Head Office
I’m delighted we’re launching Challenge100, not only to help disadvantaged communities in need, but to challenge the perception of waste within the business world.
We’re facing unprecedented times in 2021. While offices across the world sit empty, silently waiting for staff that may or may not return, there is an abundance of built-to-last office furniture that faces the prospect of no longer being required. This holds the potential for a lot of ‘waste’.
However, not all waste disposal is created equal. There is a ‘waste hierarchy’ which ranks waste disposal methods from ideal to not so ideal: reduce > reuse > recycle.
When businesses decide they no longer need their furniture and equipment, sadly they often send perfectly good, still-usable furniture to the bottom of the waste hierarchy. It gets broken down for recycling scraps or dumped on landfill.
With landfill space already reaching capacity, and communities across the globe desperately requiring usable goods and furniture, it simply doesn’t make any sense.
This disconnect is the reason Waste to Wonder exists, and why we set up our School in a Box programme. When we clear offices of unwanted furniture, it enters our redistribution pool which has so far supported 900 schools in 19 countries around the world.
If we achieve our goal, Challenge100 would see over double the amount of School in a Boxes donated to numerous global causes this year, compared to 2020. The beneficial impact of this success, both on the communities in needs and on the environment, will be substantial.
So if you have redundant furniture that requires clearing, we challenge you not to perceive it as ‘waste’. Perfectly useable furniture and equipment deserves to sit higher on the disposal hierarchy. If you support Challenge100, it will enhance the lives of young people around the world.
Michael Amos, Director of Waste to Wonder
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