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EUROMOVERS International

The independent voice of the global moving industry


Green Initiative Award for Arpin Van Lines agent

Sep 18, 2016
According to a report by the Environmental Protection Agency, more than 11.6 million tons of furniture is thrown away in the United States every year making it the least recycled item in US households.

People moving house often add to the problem by leaving behind tons of furniture they do not wish to carry with them to their new homes.  

However, one mover in Westborough, Massachusetts, recognised this growing environmental problem and resolved to do something about it.   

"Only one-tenth of one percent of all discarded furniture is recycled," said Mark Silverman, President of Mark's Moving and Storage, an Arpin Van Lines agent. "However, much of this furniture is still in usable condition and could be spared from the landfill if it is given a new home."  

Silverman started a free service that collects discarded and donated furniture from customers and distributes the items to those in need, rather than adding more refuse to landfill sites.  

Once the program took off, Silverman started a not for profit organisation called Mark's Northeast Furniture Foundation. Since 2011, the Foundation has donated over 2,700 pieces of discarded furniture to needy families. That adds up to 150 tons of furniture, and at more than 44,000 cubic feet, it is enough to cover a football pitch nearly a foot deep with refuse. The effort has earned media attention and spotlighted the larger issue of furniture disposal.  

Last month, the Foundation received the 2016 Green Initiative Award from the Newton-Needham Chamber of Commerce, an honour given to innovative companies that provide environmentally sustainable services. Charity, The United Way has also recognised the Foundation.  

Photo: Left to right: Justin Silverman, Mark Silverman, Rachel Silverman and Nathaniel Silverman with the Green Initiative Award.

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