In 1991 in Burlington, Vermont, ReCycle North began an innovative program of repairing and reselling household items that otherwise would have gone to the dump. Out of that founding vision, more than 750 people have received job training and skills essential to gainful employment, 10,000 low-income people have received needed household goods and building materials, more than 10,000 tons of materials have been kept from the landfill, and 50 people now have secure employment through income earned largely from this social enterprise. ReSOURCE’s success to date has proven its sustainability and is replicating this model of environmental sustainability, educational training, and economic opportunity in central Vermont.
1991 - 1995: Origins
ReCycle North opens its doors to offer quality used goods at an affordable price. In an effort to create jobs and provide skills to unemployed individuals, ReCycle North began to offer Appliance Repair and Electronics Repair to serve homeless trainees.
ReCycle North moves to current location at 266 Pine Street to house more donated material goods and expand training programs in the 28,000-square-foot space.
1996 - 1999: Moving Forward
ReCycle North staff grew to eight employees. ReCycle North refined its mission and added a statement of values.
ReCycle North added customer service training to its programs and developed the personal and professional training coursework that is now provided with all training programs.
ReCycle North begins training Reach-Up participants who are completing weekly community service in order to maintain benefits while job hunting. Referring agencies look to ReCycle North to provide a supportive but structured environment that gives participants new skills.
Computer Repair is added to the Apprentice-style Training program so that trainees can learn computer repair services and get hands-on experience, such as cleaning the hard drives on donated computers, stripping components from old computers, properly recycling unusable parts and refurbishing or building computers as well as installing the MS operating system.
2001 - 2012: New Heights
ReCycle North opens the Building Material Center and offers Deconstruction Services to address the 25- to 40-percent of the U.S. waste stream that is construction and demolition debris.
The YouthBuild program joins ReCycle North to serve 16- to 24-year-old youth who have dropped out of high school and need a comprehensive development and job training opportunity. Youth are trained in construction skills while building affordable housing, and working alongside ReCycle North’s Deconstruction Service.
ReCycle North’s Career Start program begins to provide training for students with multiple barriers to employment, including, disabilities and a limited history of unemployment so they can learn job skills in a safe and supportive environment.
LEAP comes to ReCycle North to offer a program for blind and visually impaired students who want to experience a work environment, acclimate to new situations, and learn new personal and professional skills. Most youth are in high school and need additional training to gain employment and independent living skills.
ReCycle North Major Appliance Repair operation moves to Williston to a large warehouse that can store more appliances for refurbishing and train more students each year.
YouthBuild launches new Weatherization Service and Training to train students in residential energy efficiency improvements and related classroom instruction in math and science.
ReCycle North signs memo of understanding to join forces with a sister nonprofit, the ReSTORE in Montpelier, expanding operations to Barre, VT. The ReSTORE, in alliance with ReCycle North, embarks on an expansion to open a social enterprise which will house a reuse operation offering household goods, appliances, building materials, and art supplies and will eventually offer education and training programs to un- or under-employed individuals.
ReCycle North launches the Summer Youth Employment program in Barre to employ at-risk teens who will then enroll in the 10-month YouthBuild weatherization training program, beginning a new phase of youth education and training in central Vermont.
ReCycle North rebrands and changes name to ReSOURCE in order to extend the organization’s impact.
ReSOURCE expands its operation into Morrisville, Vermont launching its fourth retail operation.