Every year at Paladone, as a bi-product of moving millions and millions of products around the globe, hundreds of cardboard boxes become superfluous and are crushed and recycled.
While recycling is a great way to deal with unwanted cardboard, we all know that upcycling is even better, so we thought we’d list our unwanted boxes on Gumtree. We expected to be selling them off to locals who were moving house, and giving the money to a local charity, and this happened for a short while successfully.
However, a few weeks after starting we were approached by a local charity call the Fonthill Foundation – a Brighton-based charity who undertake various projects and campaigns around the globe, mainly aimed at helping young people in need.
The campaign that they needed our help on was their Contain-A-School project. A beautifully simple idea whereby a standard shipping container is packed full of school equipment, from books and stationery up to chairs, desks and blackboards – basically, everything you’d need to set up a school. The container is then sent to a community in need, generally in 3rd world countries like Tanzania and Uganda. The genius of this project is that, once the container is unpacked, local craftsmen and workers set to turning the container itself into a classroom, cutting windows and installing lights. With the work complete and the furniture back in place, you have your completed classroom!
While the Fonthill Foundation were doing very well for donations – plenty of classroom equipment collected for their deliveries, they were surprised to discover that they really struggled for boxes to pack the donations into – you can’t just chuck everything in the container as it would get damaged in transit – it needs to be packed carefully. So that was it, they needed cardboard boxes in bulk, and we had shed loads that we wanted to get rid of, and the wonderful thing is that they will always need these boxes, and we will always have hundreds to get rid of – a match made in heaven
While the next Contain-A-School is being put together to be sent out to Tanzania using Paladone boxes to pack into, the Fonthill Foundation spotted a problem closer to home – the refugee camps in France… they’re becoming dangerously overcrowded and the French government is constantly trying to reduce their boarders or move them on. They are also not keen on external help as it suggests that they are not coping with the situation themselves – so a Contain-A-School was out of the question. What they have allowed is for the Fonthill Foundation to send supplies to the current makeshift school at the huge Dunkirk refugee camp, and we’re very pleased that our Paladone boxes were used here too.
– our boxes, packed with school equipment, arriving at the refugee camp in Dunkirk, France
– the next Contain-A-School being packed for departure