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Ruths Reusable Resources

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Education, Educational Services

Mission: Our mission is to ensure that students and classrooms in Maine have the basic tools for learning, by transferring surplus business supplies and merchandise into the hands of school children and teachers.

Results: Each day, throughout the school year, children in Maine attend school without the needed pencils, paper, and other basic supplies. At the same time, businesses through out the United States dispose of these same basic items. 3R's transfers those unwanted supplies to children and their teachers. It is working. Since 1994, 3R's has given away more than $50 million worth of surplus furniture, paper, books, office supplies and computers to Maine schools and non-profits. Over 1 million pounds of reusable materials have been saved from Maine landfills and transferred to schools. 3R's was named 2003 EcoMaine recycler of the year.

Direct beneficiaries per year: Over 70,000 students and over 8,000 teachers/staff can benefit from what 3R's has to offer.

Geographic areas served: The State of Maine, parts of New Hampshire and Massachusetts

Community Stories

80 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Ruth's is an invaluable resource for teachers in Maine. From colored pens, dry erase markers, mechanical pencils, items for a classroom prize box to books (new and used), Ruth's is the first place I look for the things I need for my classroom. Not only does Ruth's provide a financial savings to school districts but to individual teachers, who often spend out-of-pocket money on items for the classroom.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Ruth's Reusable Resources is an absolute GODSEND to teachers in the state of Maine. Most people know that teachers do spend their own money on their classrooms, but most don't realize the hundreds and hundreds of dollars that we spend each year on our kids. It comes down to this: if we need it, and the district doesn't provide it, we have to buy it--or go without. If you come from a two-teacher family, like me, that can really add up every year. That's where Ruth comes in. She provides, at no cost to teachers, the resources we need for class. Whether it's a new stapler, reams of paper, binders, in-baskets, books, paper clips, pens, pencils, and everything else you can possibly imagine, she provides it. The businesses who support her give her their excess or their outdated items, all of which would otherwise end up in a landfill. I estimate that so far this year, Ruth's has saved my family personally approximately $250 for items such as those I mentioned above, and many others--including some brand-new new safety goggles for my science class. RUTH, we love you and thank you for your support of education. We are so blessed to have you in the state of Maine! :)

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Ruth's provides a service to educators and students that she developed at exactly the time school districts were beginning to suffer diminishing budgets. It also links the private sector with public education in a way that benefits both. I only wish the need for this unique operation were made unnecessary, but given the economy this seems unlikely.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

This resource is so valuable in today's day and age. Thanks to Ruth for her vision and to the public donations from local business owners who see the need to deliver valuable resources to today's teachers, classrooms and children. INCREDIBLE....how lucky Southern Maine is to have this available. Thanks!!!! Megan S. O'Donnell

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Ruth's is the most user friendly non-profit I have ever worked with. As a building elementary principal, she is always available to answer my questions nad if I can't make it there right on time due to the distance she travels, she accommodates me and my staff. Her items are superb and things that our shcools need everyday - and can't afford.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Again, Ruth's Reusable Resource has helped me with a big help at the start of the school year. They have so many items that are used regularly in the classroom. I went back again this week to get items to fill up my reward jar, and the students love the special items that I pick up at Ruth's. It is fabulous for organization tools, curriculum supplements, art supplies, and office supplies. There are even great furniture bargains! Thanks Ruths!

1 Rita R.

Client Served

Rating: 5

This year Ruth's is so important to me and my colleagues. We had a fire at our school a month ago and we have received so much help from Ruth's! When I arrived at Ruth's this morning my teaching partner was pulling up in her car too. Thank you for all you have done for Hall School!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have been a reading teacher in southern Maine for the past several years. I have saved myself and my school hundreds of dollars by going to Ruth's for everything from paper to rubber bands to reading books. I run a summer library for children who receive reading support, and have obtained many of the books from Ruth's. I would be lost without Ruth's! I try to get there once a month.

Previous Stories
1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have been benefiting from Ruth's for many, many years! As a teacher, i spend a lot of my own money on both necessities and extras for the students in my classroom. Because of Ruth's, I have been able to save hundreds of dollars. I can get everything from paper clips to staplers to books for my students to read. Not only does Ruth's save me money but it saves money for my school and for the town, because we don't need to budget for a lot of office-type essentials that we know we can get for free.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a classroom teacher and just made my second visit to Ruth's. I feel so incredibly blessed to be able to get so many wonderful supplies to use in my room. The children used the brand new pencils, glue, page protectors and notebooks the day I brought them back. We read several of the books I had gotten too. We will use the paint, colored paper and other many supplies over the next few weeks. I also got felt to put up as a feltboard for story telling. WOW this is the best resource an educator could dream of. THANK YOU!!!!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Ruth's has been invaluable in helping me provide an effective education for my students. Our school has been able to get used textbooks when we have not had enough and could not afford purchase more. I have gone to Ruth's numerous times to find materials to use for projects in my classes and classroom supplies like paper, pens, markers, 3-hole punches, etc.

Working at a small Christian school means that money is always extremely limited, but Ruth's makes it much easier to do things that benefit my students.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Ruth's Resuable Resources is AMAZING! Ruth, Mary and Tom work tirelessly with their staff to ensure that all Maine teacher have the supplies they need to give students a brighter future. I have worked with Ruth's for several years now on a backpack stuffing campaign. I have never seen a more appreciative organization and hard working non profit. I look forward to all volunteer activities with Ruth's Resuable Resources!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Ruth's is amazing-- I honestly don't know how I could be as effective as a teacher without the materials and resources from Ruth's. Many of my students have organizational issues; many more live below the poverty level, so being able to provide pens, pencils, folders, binders, etc to them enable me to continue with the work of teaching and to ensure that students have the tools they need. Having access to workbooks and textbook materials gives me opportunities to include different activities and bring variety to my lessons.
I'm also the Drama Club director, and we rely heavily on Ruth's for all the materials we need for costumes, props, and sets. I love recycling objects that might otherwise be trash into useful, creative elements in our performances. We certainly couldn't afford to do elaborate plays (we have no budget, only whatever we are able to fundraise) without access to Ruth's.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Today at Ruth's Reusable Resources, I was able to get MANY things for my classroom. When teaching ELA, students need lots of paper, pencils, pens, erasers, etc.,--things that seem impossible to keep in the classroom. I was able to find all of these things as well as some 'talking pieces' for our Restorative Practice circles! Not only did I find lots of 'treasures' for my classroom, when I didn't know where I to find something, someone seemed to always be right there to help direct me. When I wheeled the cart out to my car to unload my things, someone came out to return the cart for me. How fortunate we are to be members of Ruth's Reusable Resources! Thank You, Ruth's!!!!!!!!

Client Served

Rating: 5

Ruth's is the best. Every time I am starting a new theme or project in my classroom - I think of Ruth's. There is always something there I can use. Plus the usual items I get - like envelopes of all sizes, paper and paper board. My desk chair came from Ruth's. There is always something special too that you just can't believe you get to take with you!
The staff there are so helpful. They are knowledgeable about the process and helpful to all who are new. They keep the warehouse organized and well stocked. You can go in and grab items quickly if needed or enjoy a shopping experience of leisurely walking around picking out just the right items. Thanks you to everyone at Ruth's.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Just returned from a trip to Ruth's Reusable Resources with a bag full of supplies to use for a class project this week. I knew I could count on Ruth's to have a huge assortment of hands-on materials for me to use with my students as we make 3-D cell membrane models. Without Ruth's, I would be spending my own money at a local craft store buying up supplies that I thought would work. Instead, I have lots of odds and ends to bring to the classroom to allow for more student choice. Within twenty minutes I found supplies, filled out my form and checked-out with Ruth at the counter.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

Hi, this was my first visit to 3R's. I was tickled with the generosity of the companies that donate to Ruth's!
The women that were working on the day I was there were very friendly and helpful.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a special education teacher at the high school level. I have been going to Ruth's for years and years and found items that perfectly fit the needs of my students AND items I had not idea what their intended purpose was, but again, fit the bill to a T. The most recent positive development is acquiring just the right thickness of material to balance the accoustics in our reading nook. Oh, the echo was really distracting, and students were put off, and sometimes brought to laughing at how they sounded when asked to do phonetic practice. Ruth's to the rescue. As much fun as we had laughing at the echo, students have stated that it's so much clearer now that the echo is gone...one more direct impact the materials I find at Ruth's.
As much as I get from Ruth's, the organization gives back to the community in other ways too. I've seen community members from businesses to group homes to disabled adults working productively, regularly at Ruth's with a sincere and clearly visible sense of accomplishment.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a teacher in South Portland Maine. I visit Ruths at least once a month to get supplies and fun items to use in the classroom. I have saved so much money by doing this,! The items are often new, and the ones that are not - are in good shape. Ruth and her staff are always on hand to hep! Thank you!!!!!!

Review from Guidestar

Lisa23456789

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Great nonprofit that helps MANY schools throughout the year. Disadvantaged children benefit from backpacks that are provided free of charge each year at the beginning of school. Thousands of dollars of school supplies and office furniture are available for teachers/administrators daily. The operation also helps the community by taking items that would otherwise be thrown away, therefore reusing and recycling.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I'm a teacher in South Portland, Maine. With budget's being frozen and cash flow tight for everybody, students often cannot afford the school supplies they need to participate in class. Even in the age of technology, essential materials such as basic pencil and paper are needed in the classroom. Ruth's has been a great resource for me to help me provide my students with those basic needs and take some of the pressure off their parents tight budget. I'm always amazed at how many things are available to teachers from textbooks to office supplies. It's a great resource that I don't know what I would do without.
Thank you Ruth's Reusable Resources for all you do for teachers and students!