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The Three R's: Reuse Items Before Throwing Them Out

Jun 03, 2019

The Three Rs

As the recycling industry implements changes across the globe, there has been a renewed focus on the hard-to-recycle items and habits contributing to the waste stream.


Headlines about plastic waste and fluctuations in the recycling industry have brought awareness to the impact single-use products and our daily habits have on the planet. This blog post is the second of a three-part series covering REDUCE, REUSE and RECYCLE to create a more sustainable environment. If you would like to learn about reducing waste, click here.


It's a no-brainer that reusing items should become common practice as concerns about waste continue to grow.  And thanks to the internet, finding practical ways to reuse has become extremely simple. Type in "reuse glass jars" on Pinterest, for example, and you'll yield thousands of search results.

Online yard sales and trading groups make selling and buying used items more accessible. These sites have become so popular that many local police stations have even created safe spots for residents to exchange goods. 

Locally, we've seen groups put reuse into practice in creative ways. The Hammonton Makers recently accepted old paint from residents to use in various projects. Camden County has established a tool library for residents to borrow tools they may only need once-in-a-while. Stockton University has opened a reuse store for students to exchange items on campus. Local nonprofits like the Arc of Atlantic County, Goodwill and Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore at the Shore accept and sell used goods to support their social work. Second Chance Toys collects used plastic toys across the state to give to children in need.

It bears repeating that fixing rather than tossing damaged goods whenever possible is always the best option. 

Reuse Blog 1

When practical uses for an item run out, consider using it for art supplies (our Annual Recycled Art Contest encourages artists to do just that)! We've seen beauty in everything from a piece of scrap paper to a plastic cap.


Reuse Blog 2

More About the Habitat for Humanity ReStore


Instead of throwing away gently used furniture, appliances, home goods or building materials, Habitat for Humanity has a store that accepts these types of items as donations. The ReStore program sells donated goods to the public at a fraction of the retail price, with proceeds going to help build strength, stability, self-reliance and shelter in the local community. The Habitat for Humanity Atlantic County ReStore recently moved to a new location at 6825 Tilton Road in Northfield and is open Tuesday through Saturday. When disposing of household items, consider this option to help keep waste out of the landfill and build a strong community.

Reuse Blog 3

Habitat for Humanity Acceptable Donations:


  • Furniture in very good condition
  • Appliances (must be in good/clean working condition no more than 7 years old)
  • Small Appliances (working only)
  • Vacuum Cleaners (working only)
  • Glassware/Silverware/Cookware/Bakeware
  • Framed Mirrors/Pictures/Paintings
  • Picture Frames (glass intact)
  • Lamps
  • Area Rugs
  • Household Décor/Flower Arrangements
  • Tools
  • Building/Plumbing/Electrical Materials
  • Tile/Hardwood/Linoleum (new only)
  • Windows (free of rot and nails)/Screens
  • Doors/Bi-Fold Doors/Screens (interior/exterior)
  • New bathroom fixtures
  • Exercise Equipment