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Art of Recycle

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Arts Education, Environment, Recycling

Mission: Our mission is to develop, heal and grow community through recycled art. We aim to inspire more art and assist artists in developing skills for art creation by using and re-using the available resources around them. Our objective is to teach people how to create "art with purpose" reusing discarded, unwanted, and excess items; creating generations of artists and crafters who are more environmentally conscious.

Results: To date we have inspired, encouraged and brightened the lives of thousands of individuals. Free Crafting Area: Our Craft Castle has benefited tens of thousands of children, adults and individuals with special needs by providing a safe haven where people can craft at no cost. This particularly benefits families and special needs community with limited budgets. Thrifty Craft Store: We have successfully kept tons of trash out of our local landfill as well as provided tens of thousands of people with low cost craft supplies that they may not otherwise have been able to afford. Free Teachers Section: We have created a successful program that provides free crafting materials and other teachers supplies to teachers of every grade level and their students of every skill level. Volunteer Opportunities: The general public, people doing community service, students, seniors and people with intellectual disabilities are all welcome to volunteer at AoR. We provide individuals with tasks that are suited to their particular skill levels. We have teamed up and networked with other organizations such as local school districts, local businesses and other non-profit organizations in order to assist and facilitate them with needed materials and occasional funding in order for their organizations to function more smoothly.

Target demographics: All potential and current artists and crafters and to facilitate the teachers of art.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 25000

Geographic areas served: Ephrata, PA and we facilitate people within a 100 plus mile radius. We affect people globally through our social media sites and website.

Programs: Art of Recycle is a community arts resource center for families, educators and the public. We offer a free crafting area, free teachers supplies, low-cost art materials to the public and assist children and special needs individuals with social skills education. At Art of Recycle we provide a free crafting area during our hours of operation, which is open and available to everyone of every age as long as they are capable of crafting at any skill level. Our crafting area is stocked full of all sorts of free crafting supplies that are donated to us by the community around us. We also provide the use of tools and equipment (such as sewing machines, hot glue guns, stamps, cutters and scissors, heat guns, and much more) that many people may not otherwise be able to afford, and we instruct people on how to use those tools if they need instruction. We are community supported. We have developed a thrifty craft store that is stocked with new and used items donated by the public. Revenue from the craft store helps to pay our rent, utilities, insurance and other overhead costs. The thrifty craft store is full of donated, new and slightly used, craft supplies that are sold at affordable prices making crafting an affordable hobby to anyone and everyone. Art is a necessity.

Community Stories

75 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been working with this organization for almost a year. My students with special needs have been volunteering and learning many important work skills and experiences. They are truly support our local community and give back so much! Our students create crafts that are sold at the IU13 Winter and Spring Bazaar. Art of Recycle has given students their supplies for free and has helped to promote their mini business. Monies raised by the students go back to the students to provide them with opportunities many of them may never get to experience otherwise.Art of Recycle has also done workshops with our students. They continues to share their gifts and creativity each day. They do ALL of this and do not take a paycheck.God has blessed both Chelas and Nobody with an amazing gift. I personally am very grateful to have them as a part of the Ephrata community!

2 Patricia150

Client Served

Rating: 5

I absolutely love this craft center. Mr Special, Chelas and their volunteers are so welcoming and helpful. I have taken three of their classes this summer. They were all so much fun and I came home at the end of the evening with a finished project! They are now my favorite charity for donations. I LOVE how they Recycle things that would normally end up in a landfill.

3

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This place is a must-visit for people who love to create. I don't live in the area, but I stop there whenever I'm nearby. I always find some neat picture frames and signs. I love that supplies of all kinds which might otherwise be thrown away are available at very low prices. It's inspiring to see art that they have created around the store, and at the same time know that reusing these items is helping to keep our planet habitable. Even the receipts are inspiring!

2 Candice8

Client Served

Rating: 5

We were only at AoR once and my 3 1/2 year old LOVED it!!! We will definitely be going again!!! And I always keep a close eye on my child, I never assume the staff needs to babysit while I shop. Some people run all over people. Sad.

2 Samantha70

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

My girls (9&7) love coming here. Everyone is always so nice and friendly. My girls love the craft table . They make puppets and then go back to the puppet station and put on a show. They ask me to take them there quite often. It's a great place to take the kids.

1 Kathryn18

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Excellent venue for parents and children to come craft. Small children may need some supervision, as small parts are easy to swallow, but most parents SHOULD already realize this. Ms. Chelas and Mr. Nobody Special are the creative directors for this wonderful wonderland of art and craft, and I know them both to have big hearts and exciting ideas. Mr. Special can be seen at the Ephrata Park on concert nights making balloon animals. They are a team! Go as soon as you can. This is a very neat addition to the artistic community of Ephrata. As an Activity Director in a local nursing home, I couldn't do what I do as easily without this great resource.

Previous Stories
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Client Served

Rating: 5

The first time I walked into the Art or Recycle center, I was greeted by a large tree sculpture with bells and doors and places to write wishes for the fairies to grant. I immediately knew that I had found a refuge for my creative child within to come out and play.

Since then, I have attended a sewing workshop, visited during one of the frequent Wednesday evening artistic drop by "hang out" sessions, and shopped for materials for my own projects.

I work as an activity professional with the elderly population and am always in the market for low cost art materials for them and for easy high success projects to help my clients express themselves . Chelas and Mr. Special have both been encouraging, helpful with suggestions, and both are soothing persons to explain things to and to have help me find my own high success rates.

I recommended their children's open crafting area to my Sister in Law, who Homeschools, and she said that this would be the perfect place for her to bring her kids for the art portion of her lessons. In fact, every time I stop by, there are assorted happy children around the table getting involved in some creative and crafty ventures.

1

Donor

Rating: 5

Love, love, love Art of Recycle! My Grandchildren go there whenever they visit and love it. The staff is so friendly and helpful! We have been restoring a 1936 home in Ephrata and always find what we need, if we can't find it...the staff will search their inventory for what we need. Bravo to Art of Recycle for providing this place for children to go and express their creavitiy in a safe, friendly environment and for saving many treasures from the trash!

2 Lisa A Bailey

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My son got married in June and wanted a "wish in a bottle" table at the wedding due to the fact that it was a beach wedding theme. We were able to find so much more than we needed so reasonably priced at Art of Recycle that we created an entire table of "Wish in a Bottle" with basket, shells, an old sailor, old bottles and candles with melted wax, even a ship. What a wonderful place. It inspires the child in each of us to come out and play.

Previous Stories
2

Client Served

Rating: 4

I love the Art of Recycle and visit often. Everyone I have brought with me to visit gets encouraged to get there creative juices going and always find something they have to take home. I am looking forward to moving across the street in Oct. and helping out with the sewing and creating. Fantastic place for KIDS of all ages to be creative. See you there.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Art of Recycle is one of the most magical places there is. My son and I have been going there for 2 years and love it. It is an awesome place to volunteer and be. Being at Art of Recycle is therapy to me and being apart of it's operation and success makes my heart smile. There are so many people that benefit from Art of Recycle being in business. My son is 5 years old and loves making finger puppets, playing in the puppet theater and also volunteers. He has also met and plays with some the other kids that frequent Art of Recycle. We have made some great friends from being at Art of Recycle including Chelas, Mr. Nobody Special, Phoenix and many more. Thank you for all you do for our community and may Art of Recycle flourish!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

We love Art of Recycle. My daughters ( ages 10 &10) and I can spend hours making fun projects at Ephrata's Art of Recycle. We have become a more "crafty" family. It is a great way to spend time with my girls, away from electronics. Miss Chelas and Mr. Nobody Special are so friendly!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have been a customer at the store and also have hired Chelas and Mr Nobody Special twice for private parties. They are the most caring and kind indiduals. And are so great and patient with children. I have referred them to others and everybody who has had them for parties raves about how great they are. The store is a awesome place to find all kinds of unique treasures for all your crafty needs. I am so glad I have AOR in my town and that Chelas and Mr Nobody are here too. They are super talented and very kind. Keep up the great work guys.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I first heard about Art of Recycle at an event where they provided face painting and Balloon creations. Very warm and welcoming folks! And their store is no different...when you walk in, you're family! Love it love it love it!!

1 juniemoon

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Chelas and Mr. Nobody are the most giving people I have ever met. Their shop is a wonderful place for kids to come to after school and create. They are happy to help others create and make amazing things. They have such unusual items for sale at such reasonable prices. They work so hard at this art and give it their all. Chelas is a very gifted and accomplished painter. Her work is amazing. Mr. Nobody has so many talents. It is always such a joy to come visit them. They are the best at what they do. They are so selfless. They work so diligently to make our community a better place to live in.

Previous Stories
1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Art of Recycle provides so many services and support to our community. Where do I start? They offer a safe place for kids to come after school to create.....they offer fantastic buys of varied items for crafters, artists and anyone looking for neat things. And best of all they help Mother Earth by providing a home for things no longer cherished by the former owners and save them from finding a final unhappy home at a landfill or incinerator.

1 heidlod

Client Served

Rating: 5

Art of Recycle is an absolute, must experience. If you lack in artistic ability, like myself, you are in good hands. Chelas and Nobody have helped me on so many projects. From costumes to framing artwork to learning how to sew, they are always there to help!! I had some ideas and thoughts about projects, and Chelas and Nobody just made them happen. Chelas and Nobody have very big hearts. Their desire to serve the community has made a lasting impression on my family. We will always be a part of Art of Recycle!!! WE love you guys!!! Heidi, Aliyah, Sophia & Isabella

1 Melissa209

Client Served

Rating: 5

Thank you! Thank you, Chelas and Nobody, for your creativity and dedication to make the world a better place on sooo many levels! It was good to reconnect with you today. There is no other place on earth as this... I hope all of YOUR wishes come true because you are making others come true in ways all of us could have never dreamed possible.

Melissa Hand, Buyer
Ten Thousand Villages

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This place is amazing! They have everything you can imagine. I had recently visited the area an decided to check this place out. They have an arts and craft area for kids in store which is great. I came out with some much stuff! (Really inexpensive too!) Being an artist I will be back for more! Great place for both adults and children!

1 Rebekah R.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Art of Recycle is a magical place, where kids and adults alike can unwind and let their creative energies flow!
Inside is the "Craft Castle," a crafting area where kids can craft for free with materials provided for them. Most of the kids make finger puppets and then put on a puppet show together, with the help of Mr. Special at the puppet stage!
The thrifty craft store in the front half of the building is my favorite to meander in. The set-up is whimsical, and the crafting goodies are cheap and abundant! It is truly a crafter's paradise. Need project inspiration and help? Art of Recycle has reference books for you to flip through, and even comfortable chairs and hot tea for you to settle down with while you're flipping through the pages and developing ideas.
They also host workshops for the community to learn different art forms and crafts, and overall just have fun.
I am absolutely supportive of this place. It's a very cozy, playful atmosphere, run by good people.
It's the place where wishes come true! (No really, make a wish in the wishing tree and chances are the fairies will grant it!)

1 Joe_34

Client Served

Rating: 5

I can't overemphasize how much Art of Recycle benefits our community. Through their community outreach programs and their onsite facilities (crafting table, workshops, discount craft supply store, etc.) they provide a positive, safe and creative environment for everyone in the Ephrata area, young and old. Also, they are a wealth of knowledge and extremely helpful when you stop in seeking advice on a home project. In addition, they are becoming a focal point for other area non-profits and those interested in the arts to meet, brainstorm and plan events and programs.

On a personal note, my thirteen year old son and his friends frequently visit Art of Recycle and he is always excited to tell about what is happening there. Although he claims he is not creative, he often comes home with something cool that he has made. Whenever I visit, there are always happy children busily making things at the crafting table.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Chelas has created a lovely place full of imagination and life.... You can donate supplies, or pick up what you need and start creating your masterpiece!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Art of Recycle quickly became one, if not The, favorite place of mine in town. The staff is energetic and inspiring all on their own, but the facility speaks creativity with one glimpse. What a boon to the community to have not just a gathering place, creative outlet, recycling center and thrift store all in one! As a professional artist, this will certainly be on my list of go-to places for both inspiration and interesting materials. Further, my respect for this organization has only deepened from seeing their outreach in the community by being involved in fairs and art shows not only in our town proper but also in other areas of our county.

1 Julia V.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

a fantastic place run by fantastic people. Every city should have 2 people as caring as Mr. Nobody and Chelas and also have a place as great as Art of Recycle.