Spokane man re-purposes old linens for those in need

On the surface, it may just look like old linen. That’s because it is. One local man is looking to give those old linens a new life.

You’ve heard the saying that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

“This stuff would have been disposed of,” said Mike Phalen, Volunteer at Catholic Charities.

It all started when the Buder Haven and The Marilee apartments first opened up in Spokane. The two apartment complexes house the homeless who struggle with mental illness, substance abuse, or any other challenge.

Phalen decided he was going to find a way to help furnish those apartments.

“One of the cold calls I made was to American Linen Supply,” Phalen said.

Since then, he’s gotten thousands of donations. Each week, he along with several volunteers, help sort everything out.

“We don’t get rags. We’re getting what they can’t re-rent, but because we have so much we can be picky,” said Phalen.

Just because they’re picky doesn’t mean anything goes to waste. Whatever isn’t useable is handcrafted into quilts or donated to a non-profit in Guatemala.

“There isn’t much that’s thrown away. That’s the point,” Phalen said.

Just like the people who’ll use them, everything deserves a second chance.