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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

156 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Art of Recycle is one of the best non-profit resources that Lancaster County has and I hope we never take them for granted. Pre-pandemic they were an awesome place to take the kids to do craft projects and to shop for inexpensive crafting supplies. Unfortunately the pandemic hit and they had to close the store to the public - but they didn't stop providing valuable resources to the community. They’ve been helping teachers get free teaching books and supplies for their classrooms. They spent the summer expanding and remodeling for the day they can fully reopen to the public. But one of the best resources that they’ve provided is free books for children. Our public library has been closed for months due to the pandemic. Art of Recycle is one of very few, if any, places to get free books for children to read and for supplemental academic support for families doing online school. They truly have a heart for our community and we are very blessed to have them. Thank you Chelas, Mr Special, and all your wonderful staff for adding a little joy to all of our lives.

1 Susan216

Client Served

Rating: 5

I decided to check out the Mosaic workshop at Art of Recycle, the donation was $10.00, which was way affordable. When I got there, I was greeted with a warm welcome from Mr. Nobody Special. Chelas who is the group organizer was very knowledgeable regarding this craft and gave easy to understand instructions. And all of the supplies were provided. I was nervous and have been in the creative closet a long time. "I asked Chelas if I was doing the project Right and she said "There is no wrong way to do art" . After that comment I felt like "Yeah" and I got busy, an idea popped into my head and I ran with it. Not only did I learn a new craft, but i took home the most amazing mosaic art. And they found a frame and cut it and attached it to my masterpiece. They went out of their way to make my experience not just an experience. My expectations were over exceeded. I can't wait to go back to learn other art forms.

The space is user friendly not only for adults but for kids too! I felt right at home.

Thank You Art of Recycle for providing a Art Freeing time for me. Since I have attended this class, I have begun to do mosaics on my own, which i would never have attempted without the support of this Non Profit.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

LOVE Art of Recycle! Great atmosphere with a feeling of home, but with more STUFF! At home I have garbage can, recycling bin, and a bag for Art of Recycle - because there are some things that SOMEONE can use for a craft, even if its not me.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The Art of Recycle is an amazing place to visit! They make you feel like you are part of the family. It's a great place to take your kids when they are feeling antsy and its too hot to hit the park.

Thank you for having such an amazing place to bring the kids!

1 Carrie50

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Art of Recycle is "The Coolest" idea EVER!!! There are so many fun things to poke through!! It is a fantastic place to get your creative ideas in overdrive!! The areas for kids to play and create is just so great!! The owners are friendly and fun and very helpful!! If you have never been there...GO NOW!!! HURRY UP!!! :) YOU WILL LOVE IT!!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Art of Recycle is a great idea to turn today's lost treasures into tomorrow's aesthetic and creative dreams! The staff is super friendly and the set up is full of energy and innovation! I've never seen a place so festive and so unique. Affordable prices and integrative workshops are the first of things you may find, but with time, friendship is inevitable -- Not only with the staff, but with your guests as well! I made a wish, progressed toward finger puppets and then even had a short, fun, and improvised theater production. Wish I lived closer -- I miss this place!!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

This place is amazing...no, it's whatever is beyond amazing. I thought it was geared toward kids, but any person who enjoys being creative can find a way to express their creativity through this shop. To visit this shop is truly a unique experience. You can purchase a huge variety of craft supplies, you can create your projects on the spot, you can learn a new craft, and you can let your children's imaginations run wild as they create their own unique pieces of art and put on the cutest puppet shows. Mr. Special and Chelas really help to inspire visitors to tap into their own creativity and find ways of expressing themselves. I would highly recommend anyone who has a creative spirit to stop into Art of Recycle.

1 Susan214

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

A fun, creative space with the purpose of building community through art. The Art of Recycle has space for creating art objects for everyone...young to old. The only requirement is that you use your imagination (although donations are appreciated). Chelas and Mr. Nobody Special are the creative force behind this community art center and they are there to help you with your projects, and inspire you.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The Art of Recycle is many, many things! It is a community center. It is a place where you can learn to make arts and crafts. It is an art gallery. It is also a place where you can buy inexpensive items you might use for a project you were making or something to decorate your home.

The owners built a castle inside their building where children and parents can work on art projects. And you can also browse other parts of the store for items of purchase. They also have a Faerie wishing tree where children can make a wish and the faeries grant some of them.

There is a full sized puppet stage in the store as well!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

This store (it's more of an experience) is one of kind! Chelas and Mr. Nobody are delightful people and quite obviously devoted to the art of recycle...both the store itself and the concept. I recommend this place and these people to EVERYONE ON THE PLANET!!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

A community center that gives kids a fun, creative and safe place to hang out. A way to use our discarded wares to create amazing works of art. A meeting place for Artists, Poets, Painters, Fairy Aficionados. Art of Recycle is THE BEST.
My 8 year old son and I frequent the workshops and activities they offer (most free or for a small fee) and create masterpieces out of recycled materials. Fairy wings, paintings, Easter eggs, etc. Chelas & Mr. Special are always helpful, willing to lend a hand in any way they can to bring forth our creativity!
This past April my son had his birthday party at Art of Recycle. Despite my guests and I showing up 2 hours early (due to a mistake on my part!), it was a HUGH success. The whole situation was handled so professionally and artfully and everyone had a great time. The theme was Robots and every child at the party made their very own robot. It was so awesome to watch (and help) all the kids use their imaginations to create one-of-a-kind masterpieces. Chelas painted masterpieces of her own in the the form of dragons, basketballs, ponies and kitties on the children's arms and Mr. Special's balloon aliens were a BIG hit!
Thank You Art of Recycle!!!

1 Gail19

Client Served

Rating: 5

Art of Recycle is the most amazing place to go and visit. They always have something new that the children are working on. Or you might see something out of the ordinary that they are working on. They have lots of things for you to purchase if you want to make something yourself and at very reasonable prices. Both Chelas and Mr. Nobody are friendly and you can spend and hour there and not even realize how fast time as gone by.

1 Danni Y.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I love Art of Recycle because whenever I go there, there is always something new to look at or purchase. If I have an art project that I'm working on, I go straight to art of recycle for cheap but reliable things. I love the owners and they are super friendly!!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

The crew over at Art of Recycle are fantastic. They have so much to offer and their craft area is unbeatable. Chelas and Mr. Special are wonderfully helpful with all their workshops, and helping out with any projects you need.

And with so many donations coming in weekly, you never know what will be there for you to use on your craft projects.

I absolutely love going up there, and everytime I go it gives me hope that there are so many more people out there with such good hearts than I ever imagined.

1 Dan_36

Client Served

Rating: 5

If you wanted to take Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium and bring it closer to reality, this would be the place. The people that run it have self funded from the start, and love the work they do, and find exciting ways to have people excited about the possibilities that can come true. They have made their own luck and are well respected throughout the greater community. Whenever I have a arts project I want to work on they are always there with the supply and artistic help to complete the project. While I am older it is a wonderful place for kids to explore their own artistic endeavors, and enjoy a puppet show with hand made puppets and a magical wishing tree.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

The Art of Recycle is a magical place. Whether you are there to make a wish at the Fairy Tree, learn practical skills to make your life more beautiful, or just to make art, the owners will greet you with warm smiles and open arms. They have created a space that lives and breathes with the community. They provide classes, entertainment and and a fun atmosphere for people to shake of the monotony of everyday life and re-discover their vibrant and creative selves. I've never seen a place like this before, and I'm from NYC where you can get anything, anytime. At AOR, it's not about sales, it's about the heart of a communitiy creating together, and all you have to do to become a part of it, is show up.

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

Art of Recycle has been an amazing place for my children and I to spend some quality time together. Chelas and Mr Nobody have gone above and beyond to help my children get in touch with their creative side. We have gone there a number of times and usually walk in with me telling my kids they have 1 hour and we end up staying for 2 or more hours because we get so into creating and enjoying the Craft Castle which is a fully free area that is LOADED with art supplies for all to use. I would, and have, recommend(ed) Art of Recycle to anyone and everyone, with or without children.

Also if you do not have time to stay there and create things or work on projects they have a "store" in the back of the building where you can buy literally anything and almost everything for crafting. They have game pieces from old games, random hardware items that are smaller, and various other items that could be useful without crafting. And the best part is it is all super inexpensive.

Art of Recycle also does classes on various things from creating journals to reupholstering furniture to drawing classes. I have not taken classes yet but I look forward to it in the near future.