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RAWtools Buffalo | Guns to Garden Tools – Buffalo Rising

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I’ve been in search of inspiration this week. Subjects to brighten my day and cheer up my temper.
Lately, I realized a couple of native group known as RAWTools Buffalo that takes weapons off the road and upcycles them into backyard instruments. I spoke to the 2 regional chapter orchestrators, Mark Stradley and Steve Johnson, who had a really fascinating story to inform.
Mark instructed me that 5 years in the past, he and his spouse adopted a their first little one, from India. Certainly one of their first ideas was what it was going to be like citing a toddler of a distinct nationality and household heritage? As we witness a lot unrest within the nation, what would the the world seem like for his or her son?
“We dwell within the College District,” mentioned Mark. “I’ve been a college counselor for the Buffalo Public College System for ten years. We’ve misplaced college students to gun violence, together with suicide. I felt that I needed to do one thing. I ended up going to an occasion in Rochester, the place Mike Martin of RAWtools was talking and doing an illustration. Mike based RAWtools in Colorado Springs. I reached out to him after the occasion, and he received proper again to me. I needed to be taught extra about disarming firearms and turning them into artwork and backyard instruments.”

Mark ended up operating the concept previous his pal, Steve Johnson (Lead Pastor, Anchor Church) who instantly understood the implications of the mission. Collectively, the 2 set out for Colorado Springs in the summertime of 2019, to fulfill with Mike and see if they may comply with in an identical path. They ended up studying the commerce of blacksmithing, thus the start of their journey in direction of founding a RAWtools chapter in Buffalo.
“We did an occasion in Colorado, and talked about peace on Indigenous Peoples Day,” mentioned Steve. “We additionally did an illustration the place those who have been impacted by gun violence received a possibility to transform weapons to backyard instruments. The weapons that have been donated have been from suicides. There’s one thing empowering about taking a gun that has been used for violence and making certain that it by no means takes one other human life. For me, I need there to be therapeutic in our personal metropolis. Grief sticks with us. RAWtools is a remedy to assist with the grieving course of.”
And he shall choose among the many nations, and shall rebuke many individuals: and so they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not raise up sword towards nation, neither shall they be taught struggle any extra. (Isaiah 2:4).
When you’re questioning the place Mark and Steve are sourcing their weapons from, they only realized {that a} native choose is permitting the Metropolis of Tonawanda police division to disarm their stockpile of confiscated weapons, which shall be allotted to RAWtools Buffalo. These are weapons which have been faraway from the road.

“This isn’t political – we’re not attempting to take folks’s weapons away,” agreed Mark and Steve.
“I grew up round weapons,” mentioned Steve. “My household owned weapons in rural Indiana, so I perceive. Most gun house owners are affordable folks. Once we inform gun house owners what we’re doing, they get it. We consider that there is usually a higher future, the place folks aren’t killed in struggle, or by avenue violence.”

Mark and Steve performed their first “demo” this previous fall, and are excited to get issues steamrolling once more, regardless of setbacks attributable to the pandemic. They purchased a forge and an anvil, and are even eyeing a everlasting location for his or her group.

When the climate is sweet, they plan of establishing on the entrance garden of Garden Church Buffalo (2358 Delaware Avenue – close to Hertel) the place they are going to be teaming up with neighborhood gardeners. The concept is to upcycle the weapons into backyard instruments, which is able to then be used to develop meals for these in want.
Mark and Steve instructed me that it solely takes round 4″-6″ from a gun barrel to make a device. And now that they’ve a “truckload” of weapons to dismantle, there must be loads of backyard instruments to go round.

“There’s not a lot overhead to run this – just a few propane tanks,” famous Mark and Steve. “The cash that we elevate by attending artwork festivals will go in direction of preserving the hassle going. We’re not in it to become profitable – we consider that what we’re doing is the correct factor. So far as we’re conscious, we’re the one ones doing this round Buffalo.
Get linked: RawToolsBuffalo@gmail.com
I first realized of RAWTools Buffalo by The Superior Basis (Buffalo chapter) – a funder of the 501(c)(3) group
When you or a cherished one are fighting suicidal ideas, please contact the Nationwide Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or contact the Disaster Textual content Line by texting TALK to 741741. Crisis Services 24 Hour Disaster Hotline serves Buffalo and Erie County: 716-834-3131 | 


Newell Nussbaumer is ‘queenseyes’ – Eyes of the Queen Metropolis and Founding father of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Pageant of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Pageant that constructed the world’s largest ice maze (Guinness E-book of World Information). Instigator behind Emerald Seaside on the Erie Basin Marina. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator of Buffalo Porchfest, and Paint vs. Paint. Founding father of The Peddler retro and classic market on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at Statler Metropolis, the Hertel Alley Avenue Artwork Pageant, and The Flutterby Pageant. Coming quickly… ‘fig’ Vogue Present. Contact Newell Nussbaumer | Newell@BuffaloRising.com
As one of many area’s most learn publications since its launch in 2004, Buffalo Rising’s numerous editorial crew delivers a variety of related content material to our readers because it unfolds in actual time. An independently owned and operated digital publication, Buffalo Rising gives editorial and important evaluations on all matters that relate to Buffalo, NY.
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