MADISON (WKOW) -- It's moving week on campus and Wednesday, many students have made it to their new homes. Between traffic, moving trucks and a lot of belongings, it can be a struggle along the way, but a UW conservation program is helping people on the move.
"Donate and Take" is a tent full of stuff that people want to get rid of-- for people who need that stuff. It's an opportunity that means fewer items will head to the curb. UW-Madison senior Andy Bose came up with the idea for "Donate and Take".
"The most common items were couches and different types of furniture like dressers and small tables," says Bose.
But some unexpected stuff too-- like a dishwasher and a box spring. The tent is a free service students are glad to take advantage of.
"We were looking for pretty much anything, the couch was definitely on the top of our list so we had a couple to choose from too which is nice," says Liam Northey.
Anything that's left behind in the tent after Thursday will be donated, likely to St. Vincent DePaul. The tent will be open until 4 p.m. in UW Lot 92 on N. Brooks Street.
For those unaware of the tent, curb clutter remains everywhere. It's a difficult week for the Madison Streets Division. Recycling coordinator George Dreckmann says the department has extra crews out working in the downtown area, to empty garbage and recycling containers so they can be refilled again.
Pickers pose a problem for streets crews. Once an item is placed on the curb next to the trash, it becomes city of Madison property. Dreckmann says they don't want people taking things like metal recyclables from the curb. Pickers can be fined $414 for stealing metal at the curb.
Scrap metal thefts cost the city $75 to 100-thousand annually. Dreckmann says streets crews make sure to dispose of hazardous materials properly, and recycle appliances that could end up contaminating the air, soil and water, but metal pickers often cause a mess in the streets, and harm the environment.
St. Vincent DePaul also sent semi trucks downtown to collect donations earlier this week. Organizers say it's an important drive, bringing in revenue for the agency's food pantry and housing programs.
It's not too late to donate any unwanted items. You can drop off salvageable items directly to any of the six St. Vincent DePaul stores in Dane County. St. Vinny's also runs scheduled pick-ups year round. Call (608) 278-2920 to schedule a pick-up.
Contact the Streets Division if you have any questions about what items can be recycled or placed at the curb. Call (608)246-4532 East or (608)266-4681 West.
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