15th April 2015 – Greater Manchester showcases community recycling initiatives

Recycle for Greater Manchester’s LIFE+ Up and Forward project hosted its closing seminar on Tuesday 24th March 2015 at The Lowry, Salford Quays. The seminar showcased key findings from the project which has delivered 42 innovative recycling campaigns to encourage residents to waste less and recycle more in currently hard to reach communities.

The day saw over 90 people from across the UK attend the closing seminar for the project which has engaged with over 36,000 people across all the nine councils of Greater Manchester.

The Up and Forward team provided detailed and insightful presentations on project findings including results, achievements and key learning points across 4 themes:

• Faith and culture. Exploring innovative ways of communicating with communities where residents are, of a majority faith or culture, or an area with high diversity.

• Deprivation: Encouraging people to work together in their community through a recycling rewards incentive scheme, a community celebration event, and the provision of recycling information points in local businesses.

• Transient communities. Improving recycling and waste minimisation in private rental and student communities. Campaigns have included the effective use of social media and new media and the design of a ‘Beat the Bin Men’ Total Wipeout /I’m a Celebrity style assault course.

• Apartments. Overcoming problems associated with recycling in apartments and introducing improved recycling systems.

Since the launch of the project in 2013, its innovative approach to engagement and communication methods has led to positive changes in residents’ behaviour and attitudes towards recycling. Campaigns delivered under the deprivation theme have shown and an increase in participation in paper and cardboard recycling by 56%, mixed recycling by 41%, and food and garden waste recycling by 61%. Results have also shown an increase in the number of tonnages collected across all three recycling waste streams, and a decrease in residual waste collected of 19.4 tonnes.

The project as a whole has seen an increase of 58% in the number of super-committed recyclers
Sarah Mellor, Project Manager of GMWDA LIFE+ project said: “The seminar was a great opportunity for local authorities and organisations involved in the industry to look at new ways of communicating and engaging in hard to reach communities to increase waste prevention and recycling. The dissemination of the project is ongoing and we will be sharing the project’s successes and key lessons learnt with as many people and organisations as possible throughout the UK and Europe.”

Delegate Phillipa Royner, Derbyshire County Council said “I have come to find out about the campaigns the LIFE+ project has run across Greater Manchester, to see if they have worked and the lessons we can learn from their experiences so we can take that and apply it to our areas because we are hoping to run similar campaigns but on a smaller scale. So to come today and see what didn’t work has been extremely beneficial.”

Surveys conducted after the event has shown 97% of delegates said the conference was beneficial to them and 93% said they received the information they expected.

To find out more about the project please visit: www.recycleforgreatermanchester.com/upandforward