Twenty-six community groups across Greater Manchester will receive a total of £220,000 in funding to support projects tackling waste and encouraging reuse and recycling.
Now for a second year, the Recycle for Greater Manchester (R4GM) Community Fund has been awarded a new round of funding to share between community and voluntary sector groups focused on “creative solutions” for recycling, repairing or reusing household waste throughout the region.
Each of the successful groups was recognised for their “commitment to sustainability and delivering social value for their communities” and each was awarded between £3,500 and £20,000.
The annual fund of £220,000 comes from the sale of “preloved” household items in a joint initiative by R4GM and waste contractor Suez Recycling and Recovery UK.
The items are collected at household waste recycling centres across Greater Manchester, before being cleaned and repaired for resale in three ‘Renew Shops’ in Oldham, Trafford and Salford, alongside a newly launched eBay store.
Cllr Martyn Cox, lead at the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) for the green city-region and waste and recycling, said: “Community-led projects like these can not only support green jobs and skills in our towns and cities, but also – crucially – offer help and support to residents during the exceptional challenges of this cost-of-living crisis.”
Several of the successful projects which received R4GM funding are based on reducing food waste and providing free healthy food to those in need.
One of the organisations that received funding was Manchester Urban Diggers project, a non-profit social enterprise that focuses on growing food for local communities. Manchester Urban Diggers also provides educational services, organises community events and works to improve local biodiversity.
Future Directions CIC is a not-for-profit social care provider. T heir Green Superheroes Project which delivers accessible and inclusive training sessions, encouraging people with learning disabilities to develop projects about recycling has won funding for a second year.
Jennifer Neville, project manager at Future Directions CIC, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have been successful in receiving this grant for a second year running. This funding has allowed us to work with people with learning disabilities to enable them to understand the importance of recycling to help save resources and protect the environment.”
Humans MCR is using the funds to “break the cycle of food poverty”, by providing clients with the tools and resources to sustain themselves without relying on emergency food banks as a regular measure.
The Community Buds project in Bury is creating a community garden using people’s waste. They intend to bring members of the community “out of isolation” and help them overcome mental health barriers.
In Trafford, the Little Green Sock project won funding to increase storage at their clothing and baby bank to help reach more families in poverty and provide access to pre-loved baby clothing and accessories.
Other projects also address wider community issues including mental health, food poverty and sustainability across Greater Manchester.
John Wrigley, regional director for Suez, said “Our reuse project in Greater Manchester with the development of the ‘Renew Shops’ and hub is a perfect example of this, saving items that would have previously gone to waste and benefiting local people at the same time through the money raised.
“We are extremely proud and it’s a real pleasure to see the community initiatives that will make an impact in their local areas benefiting.”