Sustainable Young Minds - University joins forces with school and housing association to increase community recycling
University students created and market tested recycling information posters and a video aimed at their fellow students on campus. This proved so successful that this concept moved off campus and saw students working with primary school children to create their own ‘at home’ posters. They held a workshop with the school’s Eco Club, who drew typical items that belonged in rubbish or recycling. Creative Media students turned their artwork into posters that the pupils took home to give their family greater guidance, becoming ‘pupils as teachers’. This approach attracted sponsorship from a national housing association, Platform Housing, the largest housing association in the Midlands. They distributed free re-usable recycling bags to all school households. Pupils measured their recycling rates on class tally charts and competed over a four-week period to see which school community (two schools and between classes) made the ‘most difference’. The council agreed to collate data from recycling street collections to measure actual impacts, although COVID did impact on this, and school data collation.
Issuing White Bags via the school community is now being rolled out throughout Platform Housing Group, which owns to over 45,000 homes and houses mostly people living in areas of highest need. The plan is to distribute 15,000 recycling bags via schools to Platform Housing homes and engage closely with the local community across the Midlands region. The schools-based posters and Bag designs will alter depending on each local authority area, so work is under way to mapped regional similarities to reduce the number of designs required.
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