Building Community Capacity through waste and recycling projects
It’s not that long ago that we took the time to grow our own vegetables and fruit, created a family meal without opening a package, mended or altered clothing to fit and possessed furniture and electrical goods that could all be fixed. These were times of thrift, when our grandparents understood the value of what they had and knew they could not easily be replaced.
Today, we live in a society where it is easier to throw things out rather than repair, reuse or recycle them, and it has only just become trendy once again to have your own veggie patch. But we also know that our regional communities are very resilient and more than capable of adapting to change. As our community has become empowered and interested in reducing single use, increasing recycling and reusing a variety of goods, we have developed a range of community capacity building activities to support them. These activities will not only build networks and friendships within our communities, they will help all of us reduce what we waste.
The Grampians Central West region is a very diverse region with a range of communities, from large regional centres through to small rural communities. Different communities want to be able to focus on a variety of different activities; whether that be starting a Boomerang Bags sewing group to reduce plastic bag use, or learning how to preserve their own homegrown produce, ‘Can-Do Communities’ is all about providing the support to communities to help get these activities started. We know a ‘one size fits all’ approach will not work, so we have developed the Can-Do Communities program to adapt to the needs of our different communities.
We want to help communities harness tried and tested activities, and develop 21st century versions of the activities that past generations undertook, to ensure that they wasted as little as possible.
Grampians Central West Waste and Resource Recovery Group has prepared a prospectus of activities to assist our communities in their efforts to focus on the waste and recycling activities that are important to them. These activities will provide community groups such as Neighbourhood or Community Houses, Community Gardens, Men’s Sheds, CWAs, Kinder and School parent groups etc. with a range of activities to support their communities, including:
- Boomerang Bags – plastic bag free communities
- Fixit Cafes
- Turn your Trash into Cash days – community garage sales
- Fork to Fork – composting, worm farming, community gardens
- Share Your Spare – sharing or swapping produce/seeds/plants in your community
- Love Food Hate Waste – Pickle Parties, Preserving, Jamming and Getting Saucy activities
- ‘War on Waste’ Community Groups – practical activities and advice on how to reduce your waste
- Can-Do Community Events – Clean Up Australia Day, Plastic Free July, National Op Shop Week, International Compost Awareness Week
All of these activities are offered to communities across our region, to help them avoid waste creation, increase recycling, and ultimately decrease what is sent to landfill.