Waste No More: transforming junk into treasure

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We’ve all heard the old saying, ‘One man’s junk is another man’s treasure’. Tamworth residents will soon be able to play a vital role in reducing our region's waste, as a new program that turns waste into items of value is set to launch.

Waste No More; a partnership between Challenge Community Services and Tamworth Regional Council (TRC) aims to increase resource recovery while increasing employment opportunities for people with a disability in the Tamworth region.

Currently, TRC receives approximately 102,000 tonnes of waste per year. As part of this new initiative, council staff will provide the Waste No More centre with items for Challenge supported employees to refurbish and sell back to the general public.

“Currently we are diverting 53.61% of waste in our region away from landfill,” said Tamworth Regional Council Waste Sustainability Officer Angela Dodson.

“This diversion rate has been achieved through the community recycling centres at our local landfills, kerbside recycling and green waste, and a variety of other resource recovery activities that take place at our landfill. This centre will help us increase this diversion rate and keep more waste out of our landfill” said Ms Dodson.

 “The opening of our buyback centre, Waste No More is the culmination of two years planning by both Tamworth Regional Council and Challenge to further reduce the number of items going to landfill and create job opportunities for people with a disability and some of our Tamworth youth struggling to find their place in society” said the CEO of Challenge, Barry Murphy.

“The Waste No More centre will initially employ one full-time staff member and up to 3 employees with a disability. Challenge is also looking at giving some of our troubled young people an opportunity to learn some good practical work skills.”

Challenge is calling on residents to crush their cans and place them and returnable bottles in their yellow bin. “Funds collected from these items will go towards making this new venture a success. A success that will be shared by everyone in the Tamworth Regional Council area,” concluded Mr Murphy.

The Waste No More centre will not be accepting items from members of the community. Residents are encouraged to take items for the centre to Tamworth Regional Council’s Forrest Road Landfill. Items received will then be assessed and delivered to the Waste No More centre by Council.

Waste No More will commence operation on Friday 15 November 2019. Located at 6 Belmore Street, Taminda the centre will open to the public for sales weekly on both Friday and Saturday opening at 8.30 and closing at 3.30pm.  

For tips on how to recycle your household items to ensure the success of this venture visit www.tamworth.nsw.gov.au/letstalkrubbish  

Author: Kerrie Young

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About Challenge Community Services

Over 60 years ago we were a small band of parents and friends seeking support services for our children with disability. Today, Challenge has grown to be one of the largest community support services in New South Wales. We provide support to over 2500 people from Albury to Lismore, Sydney, Dubbo, Tamworth and beyond. With over 880 staff, 95 of which have a disability, we strive to comply with and exceed all standards required under State and Federal Acts.
In the spirit of Reconciliation, Challenge Community Services acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the Traditional Owners and Custodians of this country, and their connection to land, water and community. We pay our respect to them, their cultures and customs, and to Elders both past and present.
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