Retirement schemes pick up recycling awards
Residents at three Housing & Care 21 Retirement Housing schemes have been presented with awards for improving their recycling as part of a government funded project which has been recognised at an international waste conference.
People living at Alan Hilton Court in Chertsey, Ebbage Court in Woking and Leslie Chalk Court in Ashford, took part in the project 'Waste It’s Mine – It’s Yours', funded by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).
The project was part of a government initiative to evaluate the impact of different approaches to increasing recycling rates, and aimed to reduce waste, increase quality and quantity of recycling and improve the environment and quality of life for residents. A total of 49 of our courts across the country were involved in the project.
The three courts were the best performing of the Housing & Care 21 schemes taking part in the project. They achieved this by increasing the quantity and quality of their recycling and reducing the amount of recyclable materials and garden waste being sent to for disposal. They are now also recycling batteries and textiles, and have installed composters.
Project manager Anthea Rossouw said: “People living at the schemes have really embraced the project.
“As well as significantly improving recycling levels and the environment around the scheme, it has also contributed to a real sense of community and pride among the residents.
“Even though the funded part of the project has been completed, residents continue to recycle and there has been a long-term change in behavior towards waste.
“The project is replicable to other communities and, because residents are involved and manage it with staff, it is sustainable, which was our goal. I am so proud of the schemes!”
Mark Allum, contracts manager at Housing & Care 21 said: “This project is about sustainability and helping the environment, but also about improving the lives of the residents who take part. It is socially engaging, saves money and improves quality of life.
“We are very pleased that the project is going so well, and would like to congratulate the residents all three of the courts for their hard work and achievements.”
Anthea started the project several years ago when she was a resident at a Housing & Care 21 property. After feeling dissatisfied with the amount of waste created and the impact it was having on where she lived, she took action to develop the scheme for residents to get involved in. The project grew and attracted funding, reaching 49 schemes through workshops and information sessions, empowering residents to take the lead and to partner with other organisations to develop new recycling initiatives.
Last September, Anthea was asked to talk about the project at an International Solid Waste Association (ISWA) conference in Belgium, alongside respected waste researcher Dr Ryan Woodard from the University of Brighton, who were involved in evaluating the impact of the project. Both Anthea and Dr Woodard have since been asked to share the 'Waste It’s Mine- It’s Yours' model and take part in several international panel events.
Picture 1 - Alan Hinton Court
Picture 2 - Ebbage Court
Picture 3 - Leslie Chalk House