A group of Hepburn Shire residents has recently started their own war on waste! And they’re looking for input from the community to collaborate and contribute.
In 2016-17 Australia generated about 67 million tonnes of waste, and that figure is increasing. The cost of food waste alone to the economy is estimated at $20 billion each year.
Resourceful Hepburn hopes to emulate the very successful Bendigo social enterprise, the Eaglehawk Recycling Centre. Started in 1994, this enterprise continues to thrive today, operating self-sufficiently and profitably with over $1,000,000 in revenue each year. It provides local jobs (12 permanent roles), minimises the waste that ends up in landfill (more than 10,000 tonnes diverted from landfill each year), and saves the council – and therefore the community – tens of thousands of dollars each year in waste management costs.
A core organising group volunteered visited Eaglehawk last October where they enjoyed a highly informative tour. Peter Cox, who was instrumental in starting the Eaglehawk Recycling Centre, guided the group around the enterprise and shared his knowledge and enthusiasm for this community initiative.
There are already a number of successful examples of community initiatives along similar line. The Daylesford Repair Cafe, Daylesford Community Op Shop and the Hepburn Wholefoods Collective are initiatives started by locals for locals.
Resourceful Hepburn is inviting local residents to do a short 5 minute survey to help them understand the community’s views on waste and to help the group set a future direction.
You can get involved or learn more through the Resourceful Hepburn page on Facebook where you can also track the survey results.
Contact Sebastian Klein (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Helen Tobias (email@example.com) if you would like to be part of the strategy development process or just to keep informed about progress.