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Who are the Reuse Network?

  • 5 min read

Written by Domestic & General

We’re committed to helping our network rethink sustainability when it comes to their white goods. We have recently published a video explaining the options available to home movers looking to lighten their loads when it comes to donating their old fridges, washing machines and more.

With the right awareness, we hope that anyone – people moving home, people planning to redo their kitchen, people in the market to buy a new machine – can feel empowered to give their white goods a second life through different sustainable initiatives, be that freecycling within the community or donating through charities like the Reuse Network.

As a proud Friend of Reuse, we know our customers might have more questions about the benefits of donating an old white good, what happens to old white goods and how you can connect to your local Reuse Network organisation.

What does the Reuse Network do?

Reuse Network are the UK’s only membership body dedicated to charitable and voluntary reuse organisations.

Through their charity members across the United Kingdom, they work to help alleviate poverty, reduce waste and tackle climate change.

In 2020, the reuse sector prevented 111,664 tonnes of products from going to landfill, resulting in 1.5 million households being helped across the UK.

Not only were UK households helped, but the initiative of the Reuse Network also saved 123,236 tonnes of harmful CO2 emissions entering the atmosphere.

How many charities are part of the Reuse Network?

Reuse Network work with 120 members across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland who vary from smaller volunteer-led charities to larger social enterprises.

They also work with commercial partners such as John Lewis & Partners, Currys or MEARS helping divert reusable goods to members across their network.

How can you donate an old white good to a member in the Reuse Network?

If you have working white goods that you no longer want or need, you can get in contact with Reuse Network who will connect you to your nearest reuse charity.

Getting in touch is simple, you can call them on their Freephone number, 0800 085 8339, or you can use Reuse Network’s online finder to locate your local reuse charity: https://reuse-network.org.uk/donate-items

Will someone collect my donated white goods?

The charity will either collect your donation or arrange for you to drop your donation to them. Once the charity has your donation, your unwanted items will go through a series of checks and inspections before the items is either sold in the charity’s shop, with the money being used to support the work the charity does, or the items will be provided to members of the community at an affordable cost or through social fund schemes.

This whole process means that your perfectly great unwanted items don’t end up in landfill and instead go towards helping people who need it most, meaning that no one is without a bed to sleep on, a cooker to cook on or a sofa to sit on.

Do all donated goods get accepted? What happens after donation.

Whether you’re worried the goods you want to donate are too old, not fit for purpose or you just want to make sure they get put to the best use, we asked representatives for Reuse Network what happens once the goods have been donated.

First, the charity will carry out checks and examinations on the condition of the item and make any necessary repairs including a PAT test and function test. These checks and repairs are vital in ensuring that all items that go on to be sold or provided to members of the community meet the strict standards that guarantee white goods are safe to use.

If an item does not pass its PAT and function tests and requires repairs, only licenced charities (Authorised Treatment Facilities (ATF) and Approved Authorised Treatment Facilities (AATF)) can do so. This means that they have professional engineers to carry out these repairs safely and have been inspected by the Environment Agency.

If a donated good is found to be beyond repair or if the charity does not have the capacity to repair it, it will be disposed of responsibly using the appropriate channels.

Once they pass the checks, or have had their necessary fixes, your white good will be sold through organisations in the charity, or through local initiatives. This way, not only is your donated item going to be raising funds for a local charity when it is sold, it can also have a positive impact on a family who cannot afford to buy new and help keep people in work.

On the other side of this, for those curious about buying a donated good through the Reuse Network, rest assured that when buying from a reuse charity or organisation, you can be confident that you are getting a good quality item.

Visit Reuse Network to find out more, or read more about the social impact of their work online.