Education, Community, & Maker Space come together at Rethink Recycling Co-op.
A way to rethink our current kerbside recycling system, & creative ways to involve the community, our program works with local cafes & households to collect lids that would otherwise go to landfill or be lost to our environment. We take these lids in, where they are then washed & sorted by plastic type, so they can go to one of our partner aged care facilities for colour sorting. “Residents say it makes them feel good knowing they are giving back to a greater cause, leaving them with a renewed sense of purpose & fulfilment. Plastic lid sorting also encourages residents with advanced dementia, who may not otherwise participate in activities, to become involved.” https://www.thirdsector.com.au/aged-care-recycling-program-a-win-for-residents-and-the-environment/
These colour & polymer sorted lids are then used as part of our education programs, which involve an interactive, hands-on component, based on sustainability practises. Participants learn ways to reuse single-use, post-consumer plastics, reducing the need for virgin materials & reliance on fossil fuels. They’re also used in our Maker Space, where functional products & new ideas are made from 100% Australian post-consumer, single-use plastic waste. A place where Uni students, designers, engineers, & people with an idea all come together to make something from “waste”.
Through education, community involvement & hands-on product ideas & production, RRC is working to promote a circular economy, all products made can be returned at their end-of-life to be again remanufactured & repurposed into new products. By producing functional, bespoke products from 100% “waste” Rethink Recycling is growing the acceptance of recycled products & materials in the community. We don’t want people to think of recycled as a substandard product.
Being a small NFP, every cent is accounted for, a new washing machine just isn’t affordable without Awesome.
Funded by Melbourne (July 2023)