Goodwill Industries of Michiana (South Bend, IN) has partnered with local fabricators to give granite new life. According to the agency, approximately 30 percent of the slab of granite used to make countertops ends up in the landfill. The South Bend Goodwill hopes to change this by recycling and repurposing the material through its new product line, Goodwill Rocks! Items made available from these scraps include everything from fire pits to dresser knobs.
“Granite comes in from a couple of different suppliers in the area,” the Goodwill’s Fund Manager and Vice President of Mission Advancement Guy Fisher told The South Bend Tribune. “I think we’ve got three different companies that give us the leftover granite. When they’re done cutting countertops and doing work with their granite products, they turn around and give us the leftover materials.”
The idea to recycle granite countertops in this fashion came from local business owner Julie Rizzo, who owns RecycledGranite.com. She sold Goodwill of Michiana the process and has served as an adviser.
Richard LeCount, the industrial services supervisor at the plant where the Goodwill Rocks! products are produced, is co-leading the project. Following incerceration, he began working for the Goodwill and hopes to show people how the agency has made a difference in his life
“I want to teach the public that we keep up with the times and offer a lot of things they don’t know about,” LeCount said. He told the Tribune that the project has recycled about 100,000 pounds in the past two to three months.