Texas Company Donates Gift of Learning to Food For The Poor

COCONUT CREEK, Fla. (Dec. 8, 2017) Artcobell, one of the nation's leading manufacturers of school furniture, located in Temple, Texas, is donating new desks, chairs and tables for schoolchildren in the countries of Jamaica, Honduras and Nicaragua.

Artcobell donated 42 container loads of school furniture to Institution Recycling Network, which in turn donated the items to Food For The Poor. Based in Concord, N.H., IRN has offices in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle. The company connects organizations in need with those who have a surplus of reusable items.

"It's not often that we come across large inventories of brand new school furniture," said IRN Chief Operating Officer Dana Draper. "Artcobell gave us a fantastic opportunity to help communities in need. Our longtime charitable partner, Food For The Poor, will distribute this furniture to schools in Jamaica and other countries where good quality furnishings will make a big difference in the lives of students and teachers."

IRN's 15 year partnership with Food For The Poor has helped the charity to supply schools and orphanages in the countries where it serves with quality recycled furniture from K-12 schools, colleges and universities, and healthcare facilities in the United States.

"It was a tremendous pleasure on our part to be able to have an impact on the lives of children. Until we became involved in this effort, we had not realized the significant impact a donation of this type could have on their lives," Artcobell President Rick Parker said. "If it were not for the efforts of IRN and Food For The Poor this outcome would not have materialized and the good that comes from it would have been lost. We encourage others to also engage in similar efforts."

Unlike individual desks or regular tables, the furniture manufactured at Artcobell is easily adjustable and moveable, making them ideal for creating comfortable learning environments for students of all ages.

"Education is the key to breaking the cycle of poverty and this gift of new school furniture from Artcobell through IRN is truly priceless," said Food For The Poor President/CEO Robin Mahfood. "Our donors have helped us to build, repair or expand 452 schools throughout the Caribbean and Latin America in our 35-year history, but having the ability to fill these classrooms with quality school furniture is equally important."

In August, IRN loaded the donated school furniture into containers that were driven to Port Houston for shipment. But the delivery was postponed several weeks due to Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.

In late October, 24 containers were shipped to Jamaica, 12 to Honduras and six to Nicaragua, reaching their designated countries in mid-November. By the first week of December, some of the furniture had been delivered and graciously received by the students and their teachers.

"It takes a lot of detailed planning for a donation of this size, especially on an international level," Mahfood said. "We are extremely fortunate to have a staff that's dedicated to helping the poor, and for the philanthropic support of U.S.-based companies."

Food For The Poor, one of the largest international relief and development organizations in the nation, does much more than feed millions of the hungry poor primarily in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. This interdenominational Christian ministry provides emergency relief assistance, clean water, medicines, educational materials, homes, support for orphans and the aged, skills training and micro-enterprise development assistance. Over the last 10 years, fundraising and other administrative costs averaged less than 5 percent of our expenses; more than 95 percent of all donations went directly to programs that help the poor. For more information, please visit www.FoodForThePoor.org.

Wanda Wright

Public Relations
954-427-2222 x 6079