What’s considered scrap material in the world of plumbing has become a gold mine for a small business owner’s charitable efforts in Langley.
Spencer Turley of Murrayville Plumbing has launched a new non-profit, Copper 4 Kids, that allows plumbers to donate excess copper materials from aging plumbing systems.
Currently, old pieces of pipe and hot water tanks are taken to recycling centres by plumbers for a small profit, or sometimes, even abandoned outside, Turley said.
Seeing a gap, he decided to partner with local suppliers and a recycling company to set up drop off zones for excess materials. Any plumber who visits a participating wholesaler will be able to throw scrap copper inside specified bins on site. Once full, the bins will be collected and the materials recycled, with the profits donated to various children’s charities in Langley.
“For plumbing, scrap is always an unaccounted profit. Unless you’re doing a specific job where you’re taking that into account before you start, it’s definitely just a little bonus. A lot of guys … call it beer money, because it’s money that wasn’t there before,” Turley said.
“And we always see people throwing out a ton of copper. Even if it’s just a little piece, a couple inches at a time, every little bit helps.”
Giving back to the community isn’t something new for the team at Murrayville Plumbing. Turley, who was named Entrepreneur of the Year by the Greater Langley Chamber of Commerce last year, has looked for ways to donate since launching his company a few years ago.
But as the operator of a small business, he knows it’s not always feasible to give away large sums of money.
“Donating cash is sometimes hard. We’ve done it in the past, and we will continue to do it, but to donate $15,000, and then have an unexpected thing happen after that, can be quite stressful,” he said.
“So rather than pull out money from your bank account, you can do this and it’s money going to a good cause. Then you’re really not harming yourself in any way, or putting yourself out.”
Turley chose children’s charities as the Copper 4 Kids beneficiaries, specifically, as he grew up in a home with a single mom, and knows how difficult it can be for parents.
Now the father of four children himself, he’s hoping to use the first batch of donations towards a youth sports program, extra-curricular activities, or the breakfast program at his kids’ elementary school in Murrayville.
“The key to living is definitely giving,” Turley said. “And for us to start this business and have so many people in Langley be supportive, trust us in their homes, and things like that … you realize there’s a way bigger picture.”
For more information on Murrayville Plumbing, visit www.murrayvilleplumbing.com.
A new website, www.copper4kids.ca, will be launched in the coming days.