New recycling scheme launched by children

William Penn Eco Team, Karrie Mellor from Bags of Support and far right Carrie Cort from Sussex Green Living instigator of the new public textile recycling point at the school SUS-150630-103526001
William Penn Eco Team, Karrie Mellor from Bags of Support and far right Carrie Cort from Sussex Green Living instigator of the new public textile recycling point at the school SUS-150630-103526001

Children from the Green Council at the William Penn Primary School in Coolham, proudly launched their latest recycling scheme in Recycling Week (June 22-28).

Whilst working with local environment initiative Sussex Green Living and a local enterprise from Partridge Green called Bags of Support.

This community collaborative partnership demonstrates how children, the surrounding community and local charities can work together to make a big difference both financial and environmentally.

A public textile recycling drop off bin has been put in the school playground, along with three other bins which take 10 other waste resources diverting them from landfill into special recycling schemes, raising money for the school and helping orphans in two other countries. The general public can drop off their recycling in the textile bin in the school playground Monday to Friday between 8.30am – 3.15pm.

The school has been working with one of the parents and founder of Sussex Green Living Carrie Cort since April 2012. Carrie promotes and administers the recycling schemes and works with the children and staff at the school raising awareness about these valuable waste resources and the environmental benefits of recycling.

Although the school has been running textile recycling to raise money for some years now, when Carrie learnt about the local enterprise called Bags of Support who offer textile recycling for schools, Carrie and the school felt they were the perfect partner.

Bags of Support was founded and is run by a mother of three from Partridge Green. She founded the organisation out of concern for environmental stability, a desire to divert the quality clothes and shoes which her family were constantly outgrowing into a good cause and she had a burning desire to help children who lived in an orphanage in Romania, many of them had very little and none of them had a soft toy.

Karrie says: “We currently throw away enough textiles to fill Wembley stadium each year – its so important to teach our children not to throw away any textiles rather recycle them. Even though I set up Bags of Support to support the orphanages we still pay the schools 50p per kilo for the clothing, shoes etc that we collect from them – to offer them a hassle free way of fundraising.

Sussex Green Living founder Carrie says: “As a school we would love to be raising money for a charity or good cause, however school budgets are tight these days, so this is a win, win situation. We can help the environment by diverting textiles from landfill, raise money for our children at the school, and help children in need by providing unwanted clothes, paired shoes, belts, bags, bedding and soft toys (not bric a brac).”

Carrie continued: “The children at our school love their soft toys, but of course outgrow them, they have gained much satisfaction giving them to Bags of Support because they know orphans are going to be so excited to receive these much loved soft toys!”

The headmaster Stephen Kear says: “We are proud to have achieved the Eco School Green Flag. We are always looking for ways we can do a little bit more. It is not just about ticking boxes for the Green Flag, it’s about good citizenship and these recycling schemes fit with our Quaker school values.”

Mr Kear concludes: “With the help of the wider community of Coolham, Shipley and surrounding villages we hope we can expand this textile recycling scheme for the benefit of the environment, our children and the orphans in Romania and Haiti.”

Learn about all the William Penn School recycling schemes here www.sussexgreenliving.co.uk/recycling-zone/recycling-for-charity/.

Report and picture contributed by Sussex Green Living.