‘They are learning to look at items, with a creative view, which can then be repurposed for other uses…..’
By Interchange Australia Marketing Coordinator Kelly Taylor
In 2021 Day Options at Interchange Australia commenced a program through Working Wonders called “Recycling / Upcycling”.
Our participants are thoroughly enjoying learning about all aspects of this subject which demonstrates skills which can be transferred to their home life, and we are really seeing the results from improving communication skills, budgeting, negotiation skills, working with various materials, planning and creative thinking.
Throughout the program we have focused on three key areas: Recycling, Upcycling and Restoring and have evaluated various materials and items and categorised them according to how they can be best utilised.
Recycling, participants have studied various materials and items which can be recycled and how this has an impact on the environment. They have become quite conscientious about playing their part in environmental issues, but have also found recycling is a source of extra funds through the “return and earn” program, which can be used for purchasing items needed for Upcycling and Restoring.
Upcycling and Restoring, participants have been scouring local pages such as Facebook Market Place, Community pages on social media and Gumtree for free and/or cheap items that they can utilise in this program. It is quite exciting to see participants develop their communication skills as they barter with people for various items they have listed, what is also great to see is how they are learning to look at items, with a creative view, which can be repurposed for other uses and items which can be restored with a little TLC. These are quite good skills to have.
Some participants have also mentioned that they would like to hold a stall one day at the local markets to sell some of the items they upcycle and restore and even list a few items for sale on Market Place. With all this creative thinking going on it is most certainly possible.
One of our Interchange Australia participants has already commenced making her own planter boxes at home to sell and combined with left over money from her “return and earn” efforts wants to buy a cappuccino machine for the Day Options house in Goulburn so everyone can share it.
The crew at Jervis House in Nowra has started restoring some beautiful redwood outdoor furniture which was donated to them for this project, but they won’t be selling this setting, they plan to set up a nice outdoor BBQ area to enjoy this coming summer!
If you would like to know more about this or any of our other great programs being run at Interchange Australia or if you have any unwanted items that you think could be of use and would like to donate to this worthwhile program give us a call on 02 4868 6688 or email us at [email protected]