This past week, our nation remembered the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Most Americans, even those born years after his death, can close their eyes and hear his distinctive voice delivering the "I have a dream" speech.
Throughout his lifetime, of course, he delivered many other wise and inspiring speechs. Today, we would like to reflect on some of his words that are particularly relevant to the Forklift community.
"Human salvation lies in the hands of the creatively maladjusted." - Dr. King
When we opened our doors five years ago, any sensible person could walk in and see that it was crazy. A dark, dusty warehouse full of discards - who would want this "junk"? How could anyone find us, hidden back in a gritty industrial district?
Waiting for the gates to open before a sale
How would we ever make rent, let alone create paying jobs and
"lift up the community?"
But you showed up, in increasing numbers each year. Folks of all ages and races, from various professions and every corner of the region, became enthusiastic Forklift Fans.
2009's International Shed of the Year
"Almost always, the creative dedicated minority has made the world better." - Dr. King
You had the vision to turn reclaimed lumber into furniture, sheds, and gorgeous wood floors. You created amazing mosaics from broken tile, and brought historic homes back to their former glory. When you renovated your kitchens, you took the time to remove cabinets carefully so that someone else might use them.
"Life's most persistent and urgent question is, "What are you doing for others?" -Dr. King
Not only were you creative enough to see the value in the materials, but more importantly, you believed the potential of this community.
Because you donated, shopped, volunteered, and spread the word, Community Forklift has improved neighborhoods and lives. Thousands have been able to afford repairs and restore historic homes. Nonprofits and landlords have been able to fix up substandard housing, and small business owners have been
able to improve their shops, bars, and restaurants.
In addition, hundreds of local tradespeople have been able to keep their material costs low, allowing them to attract clients and continue working despite the tough economy. Your support has created jobs for seventeen local residents, and enabled us to begin a job training program in partnership with Youth Build. Through our educational outreach, folks at all income levels have learned how to make their homes healthier and more energy-efficient.
"No work is insignificant. All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence." -Dr. King
Your contributions have indeed been significant, and Forklift Fans should be proud of all we have accomplished together.
But the work is not yet finished. Though we have reached our fifth anniversary, many financial challenges threaten our long-term survival. To do a truly excellent job - to ensure that Community Forklift remains a permanent resource for the DC area - we must reduce our overhead and occupancy costs, purchase our building, and improve our programs and operations.
As we begin the new year, please consider renewing your support with a financial donation of any size. Together, we can continue to lift up local communities for decades to come. Thanks for all you have done to build this community, and we wish you a peaceful and joyful 2011.
Sincerely, The Community Forklift Staff
(Nancy, Keith, Ruthie, Freddy, Doug, Katherine, Jim, William, Joe, Kitty, Curtis, Matt, Sean, Alex, Debby, Lucinda, and Bea).
To make a secure online, tax-deductible donation,
click the button below to donate through Paypal, major credit card, or directly from your bank account.
Just a week left to take advantage of these great deals...
75% off Five-gallon Buckets
of Color Paint:
They retail for $40-$150, and we usually sell them for $25 each. But Right now, they're just $7.50 each! Sale does not apply to white or off-white paint, other sizes of paint cans, or to stain, adhesives, or other types of liquids.
75% off Window Treatments:
Exterior Shutters, indoor shutters, shades, and blinds. Sale does not include windows, frames, trim, or specialty items with white price tags.
50% off Dishwashers:
Take half off the price of all dishwashers with orange price tags. Does not apply to Alco consignment dishwashers or appliances without price tags.
50% off Light Fixtures:
We've recently received dozens of new and gently used light fixtures in a variety of shapes and styles...and this month, they'll all be half price! Sale does not apply to Salvage Arts fixtures with white price tags.
30% off ALL Salvaged Doors:
Available in many styles: vintage and modern, interior and exterior, solid wood, panel, hollow, flush, metal, bifold, storm, screen, and security doors, as well as cabinet doors and doors with glass! Does not apply to surplus (brand-new) doors or those without price tags.
30 % off Salvaged Windows:
Sale does not apply to surplus windows, curved or specialty windows, vintage window sashes, or windows without price tags.
30% off Commodes:
Take 30% off the orange price tag on all toilets, urinals, bidets, toilet bowls, toilet tanks, and tank lids. Sale does not apply to surplus commodes or commodes without price tags.
Wed, Thurs, & Fri: 10-6
Sat & Sun: 9-6
We remain closed on Mondays & Tuesdays. Don't worry, we'll return to longer hours in the spring!
Our huge warehouse is located at:
4671 Tanglewood Dr, Edmonston MD 20781
For detailed directions,
see our website.
We're in the Hyattsville area, just 5 minutes from the DC line.
To donate building materials, see our donations page
To support our important work
with a financial donation, click
You are cordially invited to the Neighborhood Farm Initiative's
Sat. January 29, 2011
6:30 - 10 pm
St. Andrew's Episcopal Church
4512 College Avenue,
College Park 20740
Enjoy a professionally catered local and seasonal dinner featuring:
Winter salad greens with dried cranberries & walnuts,
Brined whole chickens,
Sweet potato puree,
Braised winterbor kale with roasted baby turnips,
and locally-sourced wine.
Live waltz music will be performed by Firefly.
A waltz lesson for beginners will be offered.
The ball benefits the Neighborhood Farm Initiative, a nonprofit project working to engage adults & teens in small-scale food production in the DC area. (You may remember them from their seed-giveaway and plant sales at Community Forklift in last spring). $50 of each $75 ticket is fully tax-deductible.
To purchase tickets,
please click here.
To make a donation in lieu of attendance,
please click here.
For more info,
see the NFI website,
call Neil at (301) 340-0352,
or send them an email.
The Midwinter Ball is sponsored by:
The Bethesda Co-Op,
David Shewmaker of
Dennis Cook of
Creative Engineering, Inc.,
Mom's Apple Pie Company,
St Andrew's Episcopal Church of College Park,
and Takoma Park Silver Spring Co-op.
Speaking of community...
You may have heard that a local family's home was destroyed by a fire at 4 am on Wednesday (January 19). One of their daughters was fatally injured and the other family members are hospitalized, including their three children.
to find out how to donate money or clothing. Thank you for rallying to help this family.