Holiday Haul-Away, An Office Purge Event

The holidays can sometimes be a time of plenty, but in a few months, this “plenty” can end up as clutter.  At our administrative offices in Santa Rosa, we were starting to feel the same way with some of our own clutter. So in the spirit of the holidays, our Administration team got their best puns together and put on the Holiday Haul-Away: An Office Purge for All!

Between the two administrative campuses, we were encouraged to “dream of clean”, “un-deck the halls”, and “let it go, let go, let it go”. The areas of concentration included all: personal workspaces, storage areas, storage cages, closets, and hallways.

Our goal was to divert as much waste as possible from the landfills, and to recycle or donate most items.


Our rock star Administration Team prepared tables and signage to seamlessly facilitate the purge process. They organized items into recyclables, donations, recyclable e-waste and office items, and landfill waste. Extra shred bins and recycle bins were placed through the building to encourage more responsible recycling.

These few retired office supplies are all that remains from the aftermath of the purge.

As a result, we were able to clean out the offices to prepare for the New Year, divert an incredible amount from the landfills, and identify items that we can donate in the spirit of gift giving. Four large recycling dumpsters were completely filled in comparison to the one and a half dumpster of trash. We also had accumulated twenty-four extra shred bins of recyclable paper. Our director of Administration expressed that, “The purge went better than I had dreamed of. I didn’t expect the amazing participation.” Not only did the team encourage employees on these campuses to clean out their offices, the director of admin noted that some employees continued to “purge” at home. Overall, this was a successful event and we anticipate continuing to purge bi-annually.

Most importantly, we were able to truly feel the holiday spirit by donating a large amount of binders to the middle school in Southeast Los Angeles where our director of admin’s daughter teaches. After visiting for the holidays, she was able to “bring back as many binders that would fit in her car.” She teaches at a school with students who overcome extraordinary everyday challenges and are still incredibly passionate and dedicated to their education.  The school is located in an underprivileged area that consists of 100% non-native English speakers in which there are 97% Hispanic and 3% Middle Eastern residents. Thus, it absolutely warms our hearts that the binders went to the right home and a great cause. The holiday spirit really isn’t about accumulating clutter. The holiday spirit is about the thoughtfulness for others and sharing gifts that truly goes well with friends and the special people around us. We hope that this new year, you will find something special to share with those you care about.

-Sabrina Sihakom, Sustainability Coordinator