To offer sports equipment within reach of all budgets: that is the objective of Ecovestiaire, which will offer second-hand clothing and equipment in Strasbourg from the end of May, as well as unsold items from major brands.
A large thrift store specialized in sports, with discounts of 80% or 90% compared to the new price, but also branded products still in packaging at -70%, because unsold or unsaleable due to minor defects: you will find this at the end of May in the Ecovestiaire- store, located in the Les Halles shopping center in Strasbourg.
The project, ecological and united, arose from a discussion between eleven friends who met in the handball world. “We have children of different ages, and quite naturally we started passing on bags of sportswear to each other, when they grew up or when they stopped playing such and such sports, explains Christophe Georger, who became president of the association they eventually founded.
And then we all had thoughts about this consumer society where the “we make, we consume and we throw away” cycle is way too short. To extend this cycle, you have to recycle.”
The idea was born to create a sports equipment recycling center. And she found an ultrasound very quickly. †Since the first collections, individuals have been mobilized. Clubs and associations too. And then there are the large specialized companies; we are fortunate to have many major brand offices in Strasbourg and Alsace, Puma, Adidas, Hummel and many others…
The major sports brands are committed to an ecological and social approach. They immediately responded positively to our project.Christophe Georger, President of Ecovestiaire
They are committed to these social and environmental initiatives. A law also forces companies to stop throwing away what can be reused… This helps us! They donate what they can’t sell, so there’s new coming to our store as well.”
In just a month, more than a ton of clothing and equipment has been collected, items ready to be sold once the store in the Les Halles shopping center can open its doors at the end of May.
“Strasbourg is a large student city, with a potential of 50,000 young people who do not necessarily have great purchasing power. Of course we also focus on low-income families, details of the president of Ecovestiaire† But the store will of course be accessible to everyone…”
The opening of the recycling center is just the “first stage of the rocket. We also want to launch workshops to promote sports practice, as well as training in sports professions, for people looking for work. Finally, we will also focus our action, with the help of students from the Haute école des doctor du Rhin, on the transformation, the second life of objects and clothes.”
An extensive project that, after the Place des Halles, could find a place in the Manufacture des tabacs, in full transformation. And which, if all goes well, will be accompanied by a recruitment campaign. “We are going to start with one employee, then 3 in 2023 and 6 in 2024, that is the goal. Ecovestiaire should also be a springboard for people who are unemployed to get back to work.”
This recycling center for ecological and social purposes will be the first of its kind in Alsace and in Grand-Est, inspired by what already exists in Massy, for example, an initiator in France, 5 years ago.