Take a look at HERO’s timeline and see how we have grown throughout the years.
December 1996: HERO, Healthcare Equipment Recycling Organization began as “Project HERO” in Fargo, ND. It was started by the local chapter of the Association of Operating Room Nurses (AORN), led by Deanna Micheli, to address the large amount of wasted health care materials from local hospitals, created by the prohibition of re-shelving materials with opened outer wrappings. Initially, HERO’s focus was to collect and redistribute supplies for local medical mission teams serving the Third World.
1997: Supplies were sent to Kenya and Haiti with local healthcare providers and to the Albert Schweitzer Institute for Humanities in Connecticut.
1998: HERO became incorporated and filed for nonprofit status. Dakota Heartland Health System Grant was received to cover the expense of the warehouse space. Supplies were donated to Fargo Hospice of the Red River Valley, Rape & Abuse Crisis Center, and Churches United for the Homeless.
1999: Supplies were sent to UND Medical School and to NDSU Veterinary School. Senator Byron Dorgan’s office assists in our application for our 501(c)3 status. AORN Fargo Chapter receives President’s award for Project HERO.
2000: HERO became a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.
2003: HERO added a local focus to its mission, supplying medically fragile and financially disadvantaged individuals with donated durable medical equipment (DME) and medical supplies. This has now become the primary focus of HERO.
2004: HERO moved to a 3,750 square foot warehouse with a small office.
2007: Current director, Joyce Newton, was hired. The part-time operations manager position became full-time.
2010: HERO moved to a 6,100 square foot location with a large warehouse, five private offices, conference room, break room, print room, and sales floor.There were three full time and one part time staff.
2011: HERO hired a new full time Communications Director. They met a $20,000 match grant made by an individual supporter. An inventory software program was developed for tracking incoming and outgoing supplies. The internship program was established. A volume of 2167 individuals and agencies were served locally and regionally. HERO provided 28 different medical mission teams with over 37 tons of medical equipment and supplies. Overall, HERO saved 59 tons of supplies from area landfills.
2012: A volume of 3,119 individuals and agencies were served through our domestic redistribution program. HERO hired a part time Development Assistant and exceeded a $20,000 holiday gift matching challenge.