The Re:Form partnership is delighted to be shortlisted for two prestigious MRW Recycling awards; The Private/Public Sector Partnership category with Veolia and the Waste Prevention - Public Sector category.
Re:Form partners with the Cambridgeshire Community Reuse and Recycling Network – CCORRN and is funded by Greater Cambridge and Greater Peterborough LEP and Veolia. Following a successful trial at Southwark’s Integrated Waste Management Facility, where 250 people were provided with uniform to carry out their duties, the project diverted 10,000 items from landfill and energy recovery from 3,000 Veolia wearers across London.
This inspirational workwear waste prevention, reuse and remanufacturing initiative involves a huge range of items to be collected, cleaned, sorted, carefully debranded and then sold at low cost to individuals and community groups. Uniform which is still fit for purpose is repackaged and sold, whilst other items are remanufactured into new items and craft kits. Most of which is undertaken by participants looking to gain work experience to gain employment.
It all happens in a creative workshop in the Cambridgeshire town of March, where participants learn new skills and use their ingenuity to achieve so much more than anyone predicted. Some of the 200 donated sweaters will be used to make teddy bears (pictured) which will be sold or go into ‘Rainbow Boxes’ - a subsidiary project, bringing joy and comfort to children with life limiting illness. Apron kits have been made from the trousers and even the t-shirts get made into yarn!
Nearly 200 people seeking employment have been involved with the project since it started at the beginning of 2016, helping to sort, upcycle and resell the donated items. The project works with candidates wanting to improve their skills through work experience to gain employment are interviewed inducted, trained and supported through a programme of tasks and activities designed to grow their own capability, confidence and employability. This year the project is expected to substantially increase the 2016 figure of 40 people into work and 66 people employment ready.
Patricia Watson, who manages the project at Veolia said: “We see waste as a resource and are continually looking for new ways to reuse and recycle items to support a circular economy. Our old uniform is such a mixture of materials, in various states of cleanliness and disrepair, the traditional recycling markets simply couldn’t deal with it. We’re delighted to be part of such an innovative solution which not only diverts waste from landfill and energy recovery, but more importantly, helps support the local community and people into work. I look forward to helping the scheme grow to expand these incredible social and environmental benefits”
Claire Higgins, Board Member of the Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough LEP, who have funded the scheme for a second year said: “Reuseful UK has gone from strength to strength over the past year, providing a unique package of tailored support for local people seeking to get both the skills and confidence they need to return to the workplace often after they have faced some very difficult challenges. Their focus on continual improvement, and personalising the experience they give to everyone that works with them, has ensured fantastic successes to date.
Nikki DiGiovanni, Chief Executive Officer of Reuseful UK, said: “The Re:Form Team are delighted to be shortlisted by MRW for these awards. The astounding results are achieved by a small group of tenacious, dedicated people who passionately believe that the reuse of resources goes hand in hand with providing opportunities for people to learn new skills in a supportive and friendly environment.
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Notes to the Editor
About Reuseful UK
The Re:Form project is managed and coordinated by Reuseful UK, the national charity created by members of the scrapstore community to support the reuse of unwanted resources for the benefit of children and communities. Clean reusable scrap materials (which businesses find hard to recycle so would otherwise be landfilled) are made available for children to play with through a network of independent 'scrapstores' across the UK.
T: 0560 364 9391
M: 0790 595 1735
About Veolia UK
Veolia is committed to protecting the environment and improving the lives of the communities in which it operates. Veolia has been awarded two of the UK's most prestigious business accolades for its role as an environmental and social sustainability leader. It was recognised in 2016 as Business in the Community's Responsible Business of the Year, and in 2014 it was awarded the Queen's Award for Enterprise in Sustainable Development.
Veolia group is the global leader in optimised resource management. With over 163,000 employees worldwide, the Group designs and provides water, waste and energy management solutions that contribute to the sustainable development of communities and industries. Through its three complementary business activities, Veolia helps to develop access to resources, preserve available resources, and to replenish them. In 2016, the Veolia group supplied 100 million people with drinking water and 61 million people with wastewater service, produced 54 million megawatt hours of energy and converted 30 million metric tonnes of waste into new materials and energy. Veolia Environment (listed on Paris Euronext: VIE) recorded consolidated revenue of €24.39 billion in 2016. www.veolia.com