The 2015 Community Impact Awards: Social Entrepreneurship

By JEANNE LANG JONES October 19, 2015


This article originally appeared in the November 2015 issue of Seattle Magazine.

Second Use

Second Use harvests building material from homes and commercial spaces slated for remodel or demolition some 3,000 tons annually and sells it at the companys SoDo store. In return for providing the material, the homeowner or contractor may be offered cash, a store credit or a Habitat for Humanity receipt.

Second Use is the second-largest donor to Habitat for Humanity in the Puget Sound region. Our commitment to the community value of affordable housing starts with the affordable materials we carry in our store and continues with the $2 million in funds weve been able to direct toward local Habitat for Humanity projects in partnership with our material suppliers, says President Dirk Wassink.

The company also co-hosts training workshops with Mighty House Construction, so people will know how to use their salvaged materials.

Twice a year, the Backyard Barter organization holds a swap meet at Second Use, where participants can trade their stuff with one another. Second Use also collects unused paint and sponsors crafts markets to support local artists. Second Use spends about $100,000 a year putting together its community events.

Community Sourced Capital

Only one in five small businesses applying for a bank loan is approved, according to the Harvard Business Review. Community Sourced Capital gives local businesses an opportunity to turn to their communities for financial help through a network of like-minded lenders and individuals who want to support their neighborhood businesses. Since 2013, more than 50 small businesses have borrowed nearly $1 million raised from some 4,000 individuals. Of these loans, 98 percent have been repaid or are in good standing.

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