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Donate your old tools this August to help those in need!

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Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, in partnership with Tools For Solidarity, is appealing to the public to donate old tools and sewing machines in the last week of August to give a new lease of life to others.

Tools For Solidarity is a nonprofit development organisation from Northern Ireland run entirely by volunteers.  It supports artisans and communities in some of the poorest countries in the world by providing high quality refurbished hand tools and machines . The organisation also provides sheltered placements in Northern Ireland for people with special needs and those excluded from being able to contribute to society in a positive way.

The donations of hand tools and sewing machines will be used in sub Saharan Africa.  In the struggle to develop, bare hands are not enough for those living there. The donated tools and machines are given to skilled tradespeople in Tanzania and Uganda, providing them with the chance of using them to make a livelihood for themselves and their families.

Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Councillor Michelle Knight-McQuillan said, “Tucked away in our sheds and garages are saws, vices, hammers and many different hand tools which we have bought ourselves or inherited from parents and grandparents.

“These tools can make a dramatic difference to the lives of trades-people in Africa. This is a great opportunity to donate your unwanted or unused hand tools and sewing machines to be put to good use and help those most in need in developing countries.”

The tools and sewing machines provide people and communities in sub Saharan Africa with the means to start their own business. Tools For Solidarity also provides training to maintain and fix tools and sewing machines, as well as courses to improve tailoring skills.  Providing the tools and skills help people and communities create and sustain businesses to provide for their families.

Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council’s Waste and Recycling Officer, Fiona Watters said, “The importance of hand-held tools and sewing machines in developing communities cannot be over-stated.  Local artisans can realise their own personal human worth through work.

“Construction of houses, plumbing installations and metal working as well as other trades provides an income, the ability to support families, buy food and help children through school which is a significant factor in breaking the cycle of poverty.

“Tools For Solidarity assisted in establishing a sewing centre in 2007 to support tailors within 4 large regions in Tanzania and Uganda. The project is still operating and provides free training to around 230 tailors each year, trains mechanics to look after the machines and provides a back-up service including spares. There is a high demand from tailors for machines, which enables the centre to operate on a self-funding basis.

“I would encourage everyone to dust down unwanted hacksaws, planes, screwdrivers and sewing machines and donate them to help change lives. Doing so can provide someone in Africa with a life-changing route to employment and self-sufficiency.”

To support this project please donate your unwanted tools and sewing machines during the last week in August to: Coleraine Donation Drop Point is Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council Coleraine Office, 66 Portstewart Road, Coleraine, BT52 1EY.  The office is open for donations from 9am to 5pm, Monday 24th to Friday 28th of August.  Staff will be on hand to assist lifting of items if required.

For a list of accepted tools and sewing machines please contact Fiona Watters, Waste & Recycling Officer on 028 7034 7272 or email [email protected]causewaycoastandglens.gov.uk.

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