June 6, 2021
In your own words, tell us about your project.
We want the public to rethink how they consume, as waste is a resource we want to prevent (refuse) waste of valuable resource streams.
We demonstrate reuse of waste and inspire others to action.
We have a number of research projects based in NUIG.
We would like to support the less fortunate and are part of the social economy.
Rethink is a Social Enterprise (Public Benefit Entity - PBE) working in Galway on waste which in short aims to inspire sustainability action and practice in others through demonstration and provision of services. Rethink is member of CRNI (https://crni.ie/our-members/rethink-ireland/ ). Rethink collaborates with Belgium colleagues who have developed their own unique solutions to their local waste and social issues, namely Kringwinkelhageland (click here). The 6 units of Rethink focus on rethinking consumption through: (i) a library of things, and reuse/repurposing of (ii) building materials (initially paint and sheep wool), (iii) fashion, (iv) furniture, (v) plastic, and (vi) electrical equipment. Rethink demonstrates an innovative interdisciplinary collaboration between a range of specialist local stakeholders. Our collaborative approach seeks local, regional and national input from research organisations, enterprises and activities across the sector. This creates a mutually reinforcing environment driving resource efficiency and stimulating the circular economy. We develop a transferable model and influence and inform policy. We demonstrate and develop individual practical case study ideas and solutions which are scalable and transferable.
Why did you do this work?
- Through demonstration and education (at all levels), inspiring others to action supporting their resilience and sustainability.
- To enable and foster prevention of waste.
- Reuse as much as possible, fix and fix again.
- To enable and foster repurposing for a new life.
- To operate an exemplar product store and online presence.
- To develop employment and training opportunities to support those less fortunate, relieving hardship and poverty.
- To collaborate with research institutions.
- Safe and clean practice at our core. To prevent contact with, and recirculation of hazardous materials.
What was the impact or outcome of your project?
1) furniture: https://fb.watch/3RZB9ZSHOs/
2) paper bowl: https://fb.watch/3RZzmiq73J/
3) fashion: https://fb.watch/3RZy2GAskZ/
4) covid buster video: https://fb.watch/3VcBWUUBBC/
5) birdfeeder video: https://fb.watch/3VcFvfrD7h/
An IRC research project with Insight in NUIG is looking at reuse of white appliances and attempting to link householders with broken appliances through a phone app with: (I) spare parts availability and costs, and (2) a local fixer to call, take, fix and return the machine.
We will soon publish a reuse directory for Galway City and County.
In the inspirational picture we provide the Artist: Isaac Cordal reflections on society’s decline and global warming as he depicts politicians meeting a little too late. Sound familiar?
Do you have any tips or advice for similar projects?
Reuse what you cannot prevent.
Zero waste to landfill.
Encourage others to do likewise and check in with them to see how they are doing.