July 14, 2021, by sustainablenottingham
Local charities rehome University furniture
The University’s Estates Office is being transformed into a Professional Services Hub to promote hybrid working. As part of this, Business Support Manager Rob Severn has been helping local charities make use of the surplus office furniture and preventing as much as possible from going to landfill. Staff from Mojatu Foundation clearing the Estates Office
I arrived at the University of Nottingham in February 2021 as Business Support Manager. One of my first tasks was to move staff and furniture from the old Estates office to allow it to be refurbished as University Park Professional Services Hub East. My first and biggest task was to start the move of staff to other locations across the University and push them (gently) towards flexible or hybrid working arrangements were possible.
Once staff were moved, I was able to look at the furniture and saw what a huge stock of furniture may possibly end up in landfill. We also had a huge supply of telephones desktops and screens.
Staff removed all their personal possessions in May and through a contact at the Princes Trust, I was able to advertise the furniture available to local charities. Fortunately, a few organisations needed some office furniture, and we were able to supply the following charities.
Equation, a local domestic violence charity, were provided with 12 straight desks and 15 office chairs. Equation work primarily in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. It is a specialist charity with expertise to work with the whole community to reduce the impact of domestic abuse, sexual violence and gender inequality. They ensure survivors get the most effective support to create space for action by facilitating a co-ordinated approach across the sector and providing practical tools and guidance to support survivors. Equation also work to prevent domestic abuse and sexual violence by raising awareness and educating people about equal and healthy relationships.
Hyson Green Youth Club were provided with reception, and staff room furniture and a number of chairs and lockable cabinets. They provide youth and community services in the Hyson Green area.
Renewal Trust, who provided community services in Nottingham’s area 6 (St Ann’s, Sneinton, and Mapperley area), were provided with several desks and bookcases and general office furniture. They, amongst other services, help to run and maintain St Ann’s allotments, which are one of the oldest and largest collections of Victorian detached town gardens in the UK – with 670 allotment gardens spread over 75 acres. The allotments are Grade 2* listed and a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation. They’re home to a range of 19th century summerhouses, sheds, glasshouses and buildings, as well as rare wildlife, including birds, moths, butterflies, damselflies and dragonflies.
Mojatu Foundation is a charity working to empower and support Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) communities in Nottingham at risk from ongoing prejudice and whose needs are often overlooked. They took all the remaining desks, chairs and cabinets and even came back for more tambour units and desk draws (see first photo).
Mojatu tackles discrimination and helps these communities who often experience racial inequalities to have the opportunities, skills, and tools to feel they can participate in the wider community. That includes providing new migrants and refugees with the skills and training they need to integrate into life in the UK.
The desktop computers have been recycled through the University programme, the screens are being reused in the new hub where possible, telephones are available through BST at Lenton Hurst should you need one.
We were able to offer home workers a few items of furniture and a fair few home offices are now benefitting from draws units and desks.
We only used one skip in the emptying of the whole office and directors unit, which is great considering how much clutter had been collected over the years.
Great work Rob – well done to you and the team involved in stripping out the office.