Nearly 300 bags of unwanted items, weighing 1.1 tons, have been donated by BU students to give to local charities.
The items were donated as part of the Big Give, an initiative run by volunteers from the Students’ Union at Bournemouth University (SUBU) to collect unwanted items that would otherwise be thrown away by students as they leave for the summer break.
Everything from bedding to clothing, DVDs and household goods like pots and pans were donated by students living across Winton – through door to door collections and drop-off points at the university – over the past three weeks.
The donated items will now be given to local charities to use and sell through their stores in the area.
MSc Events Marketing student Nikolas Farano has overseen the Big Give campaign as part of his placement with SUBU Volunteering.
He said: “This is the first year that we have done the campaign – we are quite surprised to see how many bags we have collected.
“We wanted to make it as easy for the students to donate their items as possible, so that they don’t just leave their unwanted things in the streets. So having a campaign like this helps charities in need as well as keeping the streets clean.”
Most of the items have been donated to charities with shops in the area to sell on, while bedding will be given to animal shelters in the area to use.
Kim Oliver, manager of the Age UK Bournemouth store in Parkstone was among those collecting items donated through the Big Give.
She said: “I’ve taken about 25 bags and maybe ten boxes filled with bits and bobs.
“Because it’s car boot season, donations are really scarce at the moment, so this will make a huge difference.
“I’ve mainly got women’s clothes and women’s bags, as they are the biggest sellers in the charity shop, and a bit of bric a brac.
“It’s amazing – and it’s great that these items are going to local charity shops rather than being thrown away.”
This is the first time that the Big Give initiative has run, and it is hoped that the campaign will run again next year and expand to include BU’s Halls of Residence.
SUBU President Chloe Schendel-Wilson said: “It’s been fantastic – the students have done really, really well and donated loads, and people in the local area have warmed to it really nicely.
“We are helping the students out by reusing their things but also making it as easy as possible for them to be environmentally friendly, as well as giving back to local charities in Winton, so they are benefiting as well.”