Brief Overview of What We’re Doing
Delta Institute has long focused on deconstruction and waste reduction as ways to create a more economically vibrant Midwest. This focus led to the creation of the Rebuilding Exchange, a social venture that Delta spun off into it’s own separate organization.
Rebuilding Exchange is a nonprofit social enterprise founded by Delta Institute in 2009 with a mission of creating a market for reclaimed building materials. Roughly 40% of what ends up in our landfills is building materials, making it the single largest category of solid waste. If we handle this in a sustainable way, we can reduce waste create jobs and promote economic development. Since its inception, Rebuilding Exchange has diverted roughly 10,000 tons of valuable material from landfill, exceeded over $1 million in sales through its materials reuse warehouse, provided job training to over 80 individuals with barriers to employment, and launched a successful furniture line, RX Made.
In 2019 Rebuilding Exchange and Evanston Rebuilding Warehouse were doing good work in their respective locations and realized they shared a lot in common. Combining the institutional knowledge, specific expertise, and local connections, a merged entity could become a major player in the reuse and community workforce space. Sharing pretty much identical missions and values was the icing on the cake. Now joined under the banner of Rebuilding Exchange, our same Evanston and Chicago locations offer more resources, more capacity, and stronger strategic partnerships as we pursue a nonprofit mission that unites greater Chicagoland.