Community Collection Events

These events offer neighborhood, community and nonprofit organizations funds for proper disposal of bulky household waste that may otherwise be disposed inappropriately.

The City of Portland offers funds for events and projects that make disposal and recycling of bulky items – like furniture, mattresses, large appliances and electronic waste – easy and affordable.

The event or project must take place between August 1, 2019 and June 1, 2020.

Funding priority is given to events that put usable goods in the hands of community members that need them, and to events that serve low-income communities and communities of color.

Who can apply?

Any group of community members may apply for funding through the District Coalition where the event or project takes place (see map of districts and coalition contact information below). We encourage youth, school-based, faith-based and/or culturally-specific organizations to apply as well as neighborhood associations. 

What can the funds be used for?

Projects that make it easy for the community to dispose of bulky items and put usable goods in the hands of community members that need them.

This includes:

  • Swap events, where people can drop off usable goods – like toys, clothing, or home goods – that they no longer want and pick up usable items others have left. 
  • Repair events, where people can learn how to fix broken items like bikes, lamps, and clothing, and have items repaired.
  • Bulky waste collections, where people can drop off furniture, mattresses, large appliances, electronic waste and other items that can’t go in their home garbage container. (We encourage events to set up options for donation, reuse and recycling, in addition to having garbage dumpsters available.)

We encourage community creativity. If you have a new idea for an event or project, contact your coalition staff (contact information below) to discuss your idea.

Litter clean ups

Interested in a litter clean-up? You can schedule an event with local nonprofit, SOLVE. SOLVE will provide cleanup supplies and more. If you need to purchase additional supplies, food or drink for your litter clean up, you may apply for funds through the Community Collection Events program (contact your District Coalition Office for an application, find contact information below).

Reimbursable expenses

  • Supplies, equipment, publicity, refreshments.
  • Mileage for materials drop-off.
  • Reuse organization fees.
  • Volunteer stipends.
  • Recycling expenses for non-curbside materials like scrap metal, electronics, Styrofoam.
  • Drop boxes for waste collection. Note: these must be reserved with one of eight approved garbage and recycling companies and pre-approved along with all other reimbursable expenses. See your District Coalition Office for details.
  • Other expenses may be reimbursable; check with your District Coalition Office.

NOT eligible for funding

  • Giveaways such as t-shirts, hats, bags.
  • Direct mail and postage.
  • Equipment and supplies not pre-approved by your coalition representative.
  • Alcohol.

Items NOT allowed at collection events

  • Hazardous waste (batteries, paint, chemicals, CFLs).
  • Construction, demolition and remodeling debris including roofing and asbestos-containing materials.
  • Residential yard debris, such as tree stumps, branches leaves, grass.
  • Commercial landscaping.
  • Vehicles.
  • Liquids.
  • Items that people can dispose of in their home garbage or recycling.

When promoting your event, let people know you will not be able to accept these items. Individuals can be directed to 503-234-3000 to find other drop-off options. 

Six steps to a successful event or project

Step 1: Decide what type of event you want to organize and who to partner with

Decide what materials you’ll collect and what reuse or recycling options you’ll feature, then invite partner organizations to participate. Check out Resourceful PDX for reuse organizations near you or request a list of common partner organizations from the District Coalition.

If you’re collecting waste, you must reserve drop boxes (large dumpsters) from one of six approved garbage and recycling companies. A limited number of drop boxes are available. The cost is $500 per drop box, no matter how full it is. Pre-approval from the District Coalition is required.

Volunteer assistance is available from Master Recyclers. Reach out at least one month prior to your event.

Step 2: Apply for funds

Contact your District Coalition Office for an application (see map below). Applications must be received at least one month in advance of your event date; at least two months in advance for events with drop boxes. The first half of requested funds for approved applications will be provided upon approval. The remainder will be provided after the event.  

Step 3: Promote the event

Create promotional materials for the event and provide the District Coalition with copies prior to your event. These must include logos from Metro and the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability, available from the coalition. Promotional materials should include the type of items you want people to bring, as well as the items that are not allowed (see list above).

Step 4: Borrow, rent or buy approved supplies

Secure items needed for your event such as gloves, vests, masks, rental truck, canopies, clothing racks. Borrow or rent items wherever possible.

Step 5: Track your expenses, participants and waste collected

Be sure to keep all receipts for event promotion and supplies leading up to the event. Tip: Take photos of receipts to make reporting easy.

On the day of the event, track:

  • Number of households that participated in your event.
  • Number of volunteers who contributed.
  • Type, quantities and destination of materials collected.

Step 6: Complete online report form 

Submit your online reports and send copies of receipts (preferably by email) to the District Coalition within two weeks of the event.           

Reminder: Promotional materials should have been sent to the District Coalition prior to the event.

You will receive any remaining approved funds after your report is received.

Find your District Coalition Office

An illustrated map showing the boundaries of neighborhoods and district coalitions

To learn more and apply for funds, contact the District Coalition where your event or project will take place.

Need more information?

Contact Alicia Polacok at the Bureau of Planning and Sustainability at 503-823-7107 or