Speke-based charity, CREATE UK is celebrating a successful first eight months of its white goods reuse scheme, which aims to rescue old fridges and freezers from the scrap yard, while generating new job opportunities within the local community.
Since January 2018, the charity has already processed over 876 tonnes of refrigeration for repair, recycling and reuse, resulting in the creation of five new full-time jobs (exceeding the original target of three new jobs.)
Due to its success, CREATE UK has already funded one of its drivers to obtain his HGV licence. Having been unemployed for a few years, Alfonso Luyeye has now secured a new future and comments:
“By providing the opportunity to work and continually learn and develop new skills, CREATE UK has completely transformed my life for the better. The team are dedicated to helping people and gave me the support I needed to get back on my feet. From recycling other people’s unwanted goods, the organisation does excellent work for the Merseyside region both for people and the environment.”
At the end of 2017, the charity was awarded £25,000 of funding from the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Local Project Fund, part of the nationwide Distributor Takeback Scheme. This was to be used to support the repair and re-use of white goods appliances, with the refurbished items being sold on to low income households.
The charity made an agreement with REPIC (the UK’s largest Producer Compliance Scheme), Veolia and the Merseyside Recycling and Waste Authority(MRWA) granting it access to the Merseyside and Halton’s Household Waste Recycling Centres and Waste Transfer Stations, which receive most of the region’s household waste.
Once collected, reusable white goods are taken to CREATE’s workshop in Speke for repair and refurbishment, before being sold on with a six-month warranty to low income households, via its charity shop in Old Swan, Liverpool, or through other charities. All money made is then invested back into the charity to provide work, training and work placements for local unemployed adults in the collection, selection, refurbishment and sale of reusable appliances.
The initiative’s success has meant that the charity has also contracted an additional 18 tonne vehicle in order to collect all refrigeration from Merseyside and Halton’s Household Waste Recycling Centres.
Speaking on the importance of collecting and reusing waste and end-of-life electronic products, Mark Burrows-Smith, Chief Executive of Repic said: “With mounting environmental pressures, we all need to be more efficient with our resources – the act of recycling and reusing everything that we can is a simple and easy way of contributing to the environment.
“We were really impressed by CREATE’s ambition to maximise the reuse and recycling of white goods for the benefit of the local community and environment, which is why we were pleased to give the collection contract to the charity. We look forward to seeing the full results at the end of this year.”
CREATE UK is aiming to refurbish over 100 tonnes of appliances for reuse, as well as recycling 2,000 tonnes for parts where repair and reuse is not possible.
To find out more about CREATE UK visit www.createuk.com.
To learn more about WEEE recycling or where your nearest recycling facility is located visit www.responsible-recycling.co.uk or contact your local council.