“I don't like it. I LOVE it!”, exclaimed one shopper, Jen, who scored a functioning hair-dryer for a grand total of P50 at our recently concluded Community Care Yard Sale. Well, she almost said that, with what we can tell from her facial expression. For us, one item recycled is one good deed for Mother Earth.
Jen was one of the many shoppers who found good-condition items at super low prices at TheFortCity.com’s first attempt to organize a yard sale for the Fort Bonifacio neighborhood and for the benefit of underprivileged kids of Taguig. It was not an easy task, but the results were truly rewarding.
As dwellers of one of the residential buildings here in The Fort, we encountered a dilemma that other residents have surely experienced – too little space for too many things. Which is why we wanted to organize an event that will help alleviate this problem. In fact, the Community Care Yard Sale’s objectives are fourfold:
- To provide a venue for Crescent Park West residents to dispose of and sell their preloved items
- To encourage interaction and foster camaraderie among residents
- To support environmental protection efforts
- To help send underprivileged kids of Taguig to a world class school
It was quite ambitious, but these very same objectives were what fuelled us to continue moving forward.
Unsurprisingly, there was an overwhelming response from residents who wanted to partake in this worthwhile event. In total, we had 12 unit owners from 6 residential buildings, all of whom were eager to dispose of their preloved items and support our cause. The participating buildings were:
- Blue Sapphire Residences
- Crescent Park Residences
- Forbeswood Parklane
- Kensington Place
- The Grand Hamptons Tower 1
- The Grand Hamptons Tower 2
Due to limited space, we had to turn away some would be sellers. When we hold the next yard sales, we will contact them first.
Mano Amiga Academy, Inc.’s Philippine arm is co-founded by Eleanor Pinugu. This non-government organization is on its 8th year in providing high-quality international education to deserving children from low-income families of the PNR FTI community in Taguig. Its current school houses roughly 100 students, and in the desire to educate even more children, Mano Amiga is currently building a new campus in Parañaque, which is targeting to house more than 1,000 students. In 2010, the NGO also established Bistro 8346, a social enterprise that employs mothers of students. One hundred percent of the venture’s profits is donated to the school.
Some of Mano Amiga Academy, Inc.’s students. Source: www.manoamigaph.org
It is these noble goals and endeavors of Mano Amiga that made us choose them as the beneficiary of the Community Care Yard Sale.
THE MAIN EVENT
Just as the sun was roused from its sleep on the 23rd of April, we set out to arrange tables and chairs for the sellers and sponsors (Ezywipe and L!FE Yoga Center) at the gorgeous Megaworld Showroom, along Forbestown Road, which Megaworld Corporation provided to us for free. When the venue was ready, the sellers and sponsors began pouring in with an assortment of items for sale and merchandise: from clothes, toys, shoes and magazines, to bed sheets, bags, shoe racks, electronic gadgets and many more.
So many items for sale at low low prices.
Our sponsors: L!FE Yoga Center and Ezywipe.
Even before the scheduled start of the yard sale, excited customers began filling the selling area. Clothes were clearly the most sellable items. Mano Amiga Academy, Inc. also set up its own booth of preloved items at the selling area, of which 100% of proceeds will go to the school. It was a joy to see customers flocking to the yard sale and leaving with bags upon bags of items bought because they translate to more children will see a brighter future as they will be provided a better education.
The extremely hot weather outside probably sent many people in our neighborhood to swimming pools and beaches, but for those who stayed in town and looked for bargains or a good cause to support, our venue was perfect, as it was air-conditioned and within walking distance of many residents.
We at TheFortCity.com made sure that ours is an event for the whole family so we had a hover board demonstration session (courtesy of Chaser Action Sports) conducted outside the showroom. So while mommies and daddies shopped upstairs, the kids (and even kids at heart) could try riding the popular balance wheels for free.
Kids and kids at heart tried playing hover boards for free!
At the end of the first day, two of our sellers were already sold out of items. One of them, Takahito Natsume, personally handed out his donation to Nina Liganor of Mano Amiga Academy, Inc. “We are very glad to have a wonderful experience and also happy to contribute donation,” Natsume said.
Takahito Natsume (one of the sellers) and Nina Liganor of Mano Amiga Academy, Inc.
Overall, we were relieved to observe that everything went well during the two-day event (except for a missing chair mishap on the second day). Sure, we had our moments of doubt on whether people would come, because the venue was a little obscure and the display of banners outside the venue was very restricted. But we know that as we learn from our experience, doubts will be replaced by confidence.
The whole TheFortCity.com team is over the moon with gratefulness to the sellers, sponsors, customers and supporters (Manila Shopper, Bloggers ng Pinas, Sulit.ph and Manila Workshops) of the event. Without the joint effort of each and every one, none of this would have been possible. We’re very happy that we managed to attain all our objectives: the sellers were able to earn from disposing of their preloved items, they had a chance to interact with neighbors, environmental protection efforts were supported, and of course, more less-fortunate but deserving children will have access to quality education. While we are still waiting for sellers to give us the tally on proceeds, we are confident that the outcome will be a satisfying one for all concerned.
We started as a newbie in organizing yard sales for the community. We are happy to report that we did okay. We have learned a lot. It was a tiring but at the same time energizing experience, because of what it has accomplished. With the success of the first yard sale, another one is set to run in the next few months. So to those interested sellers who were left out the last time, don’t you fret and just stay tuned to TheFortCity.com and all our social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) to be get the latest updates on the next yard sale :)
[Update: since BGC authorities started running a monthly yard sale for the BGC community, one of the main purpose of our community yard sale, to promote recycling of used items, can be achieved through that channel. We therefore deem it unnecessary for us to hold another yard sale.]