Just like everyone else I have a long list of things to do / organise / put in place which really do not take much effort or time at all. One of these things is to increase the recycling that we do at work. I have now taken the first step and we have installed a textile bin on site to collect old textiles on behalf of the firefighters charity. The main idea behind having the recycling bin is to give us somewhere to put old uniforms and gloves, but it is also obviously available for people to bring their old clothes etc in from home.
As well as reducing the waste going to landfill, we will be donating to a worthwhile charity and raising awareness of the amount of things that can be recycled rather than wasted. In many ways however, this is more a case of reusing rather than recycling. Any useful items of clothing are sent to poorer nations in Africa, and any textiles that are beyond use are reused as industrial rags etc. It was really easy to set up and the next step is to put these bins on the rest of our UK sites.
In a separate project, a colleague of mine has found a way to recycle (or upcycle as it is more correctly known) crisp packets – which is a pretty good idea considering that an average of 5 or 6 packets are eaten per day in the office (and there are only 8 people in the office!) They are now collected up and sent to a PO Box for the Philippine Community Fund. They are shipped on a boat that is already going to the Philippines and there they are made into bags and purses – about thirty crisp packets making a bag (or one per week for the office). This is intended to reduce child labour in the Philippines as it means that the children of these ladies can then go to school.