Waldo County Woodshed seeks donations of storm-damaged trees

Nov 09, 2017

The Waldo County Woodshed has been providing free firewood to those in need of home heating assistance for three years. Through countless hours of volunteerism, financial and hardwood donations, The Woodshed has established its main location in Searsmont and seven satellite distribution sites throughout Waldo County to serve local residents efficiently. Assistance is also available to others outside the county.

Now in its fourth year of operation, The Woodshed's need for firewood hasn’t diminished; nor has the need for volunteers to run the program or financial contributions. Bob MacGregor, president of the nonprofit, all-volunteer organization, said distribution of firewood “begins the weekend before Thanksgiving. People in need of wood must call ahead at 338-2692 to be scheduled that week. Depending on where they live, and timing, they will be sent to one of our sites, which includes Searsmont, Belfast, Waldo, Monroe, Brooks, Searsport, Frankfort or Thorndike.”

The timeliness of last week’s storm makes this a perfect opportunity for those with fallen hardwood trees to donate them to The Woodshed, MacGregor said, noting that hardwoods do not include pine, willow or poplar. To facilitate the donation, he recommends that “trunks and branches need to be cut up in stove-length pieces, preferably 16 inches, but not longer than 48 inches…to make them more manageable to those cutting, stacking and distributing the firewood."

Although longer pieces can be accepted, residents can ask their local arborists and tree service companies to assist in sizing and delivering to the nearest Woodshed location. This year’s freshly cut donations will season for next year’s supply.

Alternatively, MacGregor offers a suggestion: “We’ll be making the rounds Thanksgiving week, Sunday through Wednesday, picking up donations of properly sized hardwood logs on your property. The wood must be accessible to the pick-up vehicle and must be called in to us the week before at 338-2692, providing the address for pick-up. We can also give receipts for the value of the wood because the donation may be tax deductible.”

The Waldo County Woodshed provides a quarter-cord of firewood per visit on a weekly basis. The project operates on the honor system of accepting requests as needed. Last year, The Woodshed provided 120 cords of wood, translating to approximately $30,000 in heating assistance.

Currently, a GoFundMe campaign is in full swing to raise $11,000 for a small dump truck that is critical for the pick-up and distribution of wood throughout the county. To contribute, go to https://www.gofundme.com/woodshed-truck-fund.

“All of the money raised here will go toward the purchase of a truck," MacGregor said. "If there are excess funds after the purchase, those will be put toward the ongoing maintenance of the truck.”

Donations can also be mailed directly to The Waldo County Woodshed, P.O. Box 401, Belfast, ME 04915. The Waldo County Woodshed is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit.

 

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