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Visitors to Clean Community System are welcome to pick up household cleaners, health and beauty products

Visitors to Clean Community System are welcome to pick up household cleaners, health and beauty products

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The Grand Island Area Clean Community System offers a wide selection of products, including cleaning, health and beauty, home improvement and automotive items.

Organized neatly on shelves, the inventory is available to anyone who wants it.

And it’s all free.

The items are up for grabs in the swap shop portion of Clean Community System, which is at 3661 Sky Park Road.

Members of the public are encouraged to donate any products that the swap shop can accept.

Donations often come in when parents die and survivors clean out the house. Other products make it to Clean Community System after people sort through items under the sink, in the garage or in the basement.

Those items can be your items.

“Everything is free. And that’s because we promote recycling,” said Denise McGovern-Gallagher, executive director of the Clean Community System.

At Clean Community System, you will find paint (both indoor and outdoor), antifreeze, deck stain, grout, concrete sealant, rug shampoo, spot remover, drain cleaner and weed killer,

“Once in a while we get a little fertilizer. That doesn’t stay long at all,” McGovern-Gallagher said.

All of the paint on hand is ready to use. But most of it is one color or another. “I’m happy to see white paint,” she said.

Popular products include window cleaners and other cleaning products.

Some might be 20 years old. “But they’re in great shape,” she said. “They’re not leaking. And the product’s still good inside of it.”

Since McGovern-Gallagher came aboard two and a half years ago, the swap shop has doubled in size.

“Because it’s a great value,” she said. “It’s very much needed in Grand Island.”

Many swap shop customers range from middle class to those for whom money is tight. But some people use the swap shop just because they care about the environment, she said.

The mission of Clean Community System is to ensure that the environment is around for generations to come. One way to do that is by controlling litter. Another is to promote reuse by recycling, she said.

Some of the items have never been opened. Others are two-thirds full.

But each product still has “a life to it,” McGovern-Gallagher said.

When people donate items, the containers are cleaned and checked for leaks and rust.

Households are limited to taking no more than 25 pounds of materials per week. That does not include paint.

Last year, Clean Community System collected almost 112,000 pounds of materials. Close to 32,000 pounds of those items were reused.

The operation has health and beauty products thanks to a partnership with Goodwill Industries. Items in that section include hand lotion, shampoo, conditioner, cologne, baby products, nail polish, sun screen and body wash.

Goodwill Industries also delivers small containers of hotel products, such as shampoo, conditioner and hand soap. Those products are given to Hope Harbor and the Salvation Army.

Clean Community System will not accept tires, used antifreeze, batteries, propane tanks, fire extinguishers and large appliances. Items that aren’t offered back to the public are Deet insect repellent, used oil and anything that’s dried up.

Items that are safely disposed of include combustibles, flammables, old gasoline, lamp oil and tung oil.

Hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to noon the first and third Saturday of the month.

For more information, call (308) 385-5095.

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