Nelson ReStore eases housing shortage – story + video

Since moving to Tahunanui Drive eight months ago, Nelson ReStore has stepped up to a whole new level of community supported action.

Nelson ReStore manager manager Becky Wyatt

Around 100 volunteers help the enormous op shop tick along each day, raising funds that go towards easing the housing shortage in Nelson. 

Nelson ReStore manager Becky Wyatt says, “We take donated goods from the community of just about anything and everything. With the money that we raise, our charity Habitat for Humanity Nelson builds quality and affordable housing for people in our region.”

Two homes were built last year in Motueka and work will begin soon on 14 houses in Stoke.

The dedicated team of volunteers sort through mountains of bedding and clothes, finding high quality items to sell. Unsalable items head straight to the ReStore’s ‘free container’, which is a 20ft-shipping container full of items to give away. 

As well as the usual op shop finds such as toys, books and homewares, there is also a large house parts section where windows, doors, bathtubs and even whole kitchens can be found and given a second life.

“Basically the sky’s the limit as to what we can do, it just comes down to the goodwill of people who want to help us. Volunteers turn up with certain skills and they can create a whole new project that we can help facilitate.

“We have a lot of plans for our new location. Some of the things we’d really like to do is to recycle and repair bikes for sale and to set up a community space where sewing machines are available for the public to use.”

Visit the Nelson ReStore at 166 Tahunanui Drive, Nelson.

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