Although Saturday morning’s weather was not the best to venture out with rain and chill, patrons, donors, sponsors and supporters came out to the grand opening of Stettler’s new program Take It or Leave It at the transfer site on April 23.
“This facility is where residents can drop off unwanted but usable large items and where other residents can take them for free,” said Grace Fix, volunteer recycling representative at Stettler Waste Management Authority (SWMA). “The SWMA, which spearheaded the facility, saw a need to help residents keep items in use as long as possible rather than seeing these items go to waste in our landfill.”
According to Fix, the completion of the Take it or Leave it Centre was a community effort.
The Stettler Waste Management Authority is comprised of the Town of Stettler, the County of Stettler, the villages of Big Valley, Botha, Donalda, and Gadsby, and the summer villages of Rochon Sands and White Sands.
“Local businesses and non-profit groups helped to fund the building, while METALEX Metal Buildings supplied the labour, with generous cash donations being made by Superfluity, TransCanada Corporation, and ATCO,” added Fix. “This centre is basically for anything large that works and we cannot accept broken items, used carpet, mattresses, baby furniture, or small items.”
The Take it or Leave it Centre is for large items only, such as furniture, large appliances, large electronics that work, large sports equipment (bicycles, exercise equipment), household sinks, vanities, doors, significant quantities of flooring, to name a few.
The Take it or Leave it centre, which is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. has been unofficially operating for several months.
“Most items that have arrived so far have been flying out in about half a day,” said Fix.
County Councillor Joe Gendre said, “Here we are again at the grand opening of the Take It or Leave It centre, which exists because Grace went door knocking and found great community support, and now thanks to this centre, good, usable, large items are deposited and then claimed and re-used instead of taking up room in our landfill.”
“Thus Grace has introduced one more pillar in environment protection at the Stettler Transfer Station, Re-Use,” added Gendre.
Following the Take It or Leave It centre’s grand opening ceremony those in attendance were invited to a tour of the eco-centre where paint and household hazardous waste are recycled or disposed of responsibly.
The tour also included a demonstration of the Bulb-Eater, which allows safe recycling of fluorescent lighting.