Katie Peterson | Staff Writer
As Fort Leavenworth residents prepare to transition to their next duty stations, there are several ways to lighten the load by donating unwanted items and turning in hazardous materials, all while helping incoming personnel and the local community.
Fort Leavenworth Thrift Shop
Although the Fort Leavenworth Thrift Shop, 1025 Sheridan Drive, remains closed because of COVID19, donations are still being accepted and can be dropped off in the donation bin outside the shop, which is open 24/7.
Acceptable items include clothing, toys, small appliances, pots, pans, dish sets and more.
“Due to us having to move to a smaller location back in January 2018, we cannot take large, bulky TVs, desktop computers … or large electronics,” said Elizabeth Stratton, Thrift Shop volunteer. “We do ask for items to be in ‘like new’ condition. … We cannot sell or accept broken, unfixable items. We do ask for the clothes to be almost to the point of pristine with no rips, stains, broken zippers or buttons missing.”
The donation bin is emptied and organized by volunteers daily.
By donating to the Thrift Shop, the community is directly affected, Stratton said.“We had a parent come in one day who had just PCSed to Fort (Leavenworth) and was still waiting for housing. They had a wee one with them who was not sleeping very well at night,” Stratton said. “The parent asked if we had any white noise makers, just something small and cheap they could use until they got their house and household shipment. We found one that was donated and sold it (to the family) for $2.
“That parent came back a few days later and said it was the best $2 they had ever spent. Their child drifted off into sweet slumber to the sounds of a gentle fan blowing over ocean waves,” she said. “This gave me an, ‘Oh, I am so glad I volunteer here’ moment. So many others with different requests have come in, and we have helped.”
City Union Mission
Since November 2019, Fort Leavenworth Frontier Heritage Communities has been partnering with City Union Mission Christian Life Center of Kansas City, Mo., to pick up items the second Saturday of the month.
While the monthly collections have been suspended through the summer months, donations can be dropped off between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. weekdays in the 52-foot trailer by the trash bins at Hancock Gate. City Union Mission volunteers will be available during this time.
To request curbside pick-up, residents should coordinate with the City Union Mission volunteers.
Residents can donate any item deemed in reusable shape, except mattresses, cribs and child car seats, which the mission cannot resell. Items that are not acceptable by the mission can be placed in the large bulk trash containers FLFHC has placed near Hancock Gate.
“We will have the trailer sited through July depending on the use it gets,” said Joe Gandara, FLFHC community director. “We will continue to do monthly collections after the trailer is moved as long as the donations continue.”
To obtain tax credit forms for donations, call FLFHC at (913) 682-6300.
There are organizations on post that collect hazardous materials and other items.
The Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation Auto Craft Center, 911 McClellan Ave., accepts used oil, used oil filters, used transmission fluid, used brake fluid, used antifreeze, and gas-oil mix.
The shop is open from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Thursday through Monday. For more information, call 684-3395.
Household Hazardous Waste, 810 McClellan Ave., accepts several items.
Acceptable items that are reissued include paint, varnish, wood stain, wood cleaner, bath and kitchen cleaners, pool chemicals, plumbing chemicals, photographic chemicals, insect repellant, propane bottles, car care products, useable auto fluids, soaps and detergents, carpet cleaning products, pesticides, animal care products, tiki torch oil and more.
Acceptable items that are not reissued include batteries, fluorescent bulbs and used cooking oil.
Because of COVID-19, Household Hazardous Waste is open for drop-off only from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. For more information, call 684-3306 or email Michael Goble, HHW manager, at email@example.com.
The Fort Leavenworth Recycling Center, on West Warehouse Road near Organ Avenue, is open 24/7 and has receptacles for different items including glass recycling, mixed recycling, cardboard recycling, and bins for retired U.S. flags, cellphones, batteries, eyeglasses, printer cartridges and other home electronic waste.
Electronic waste from government offices must be turned in. For more information, call Ray Amparan at 684-9951 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Non-acceptable items include metal fencing, any kind of wood, porcelain, yard waste, concrete, flooring material, foam packing material, mattresses, box springs, furniture, dog beds or tires. Unacceptable items should be disposed in appropriate trash bins or collection points, not recycling bins.
For more information, call 684-3302 or e-mail email@example.com.
The Fort Leavenworth Stray Facility, 510 Organ Ave., has a red donation bin on the front porch.