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The Northwood CommuniTree 4aRts project team

Kirkby community project gets creative with recycling


It’s a case of ‘so far, sew good’ for a community scheme in Northwood, that’s using creative arts and crafts to help encourage recycling.

The Northwood CommuniTree 4aRts project is working across the Northwood area in a bid to encourage local residents to think about reducing waste and boosting re-use and recycling.

The project is being delivered by not for profit organisation Faiths4Change, in partnership with Northwood Community Centre, who have co-ordinated a series of activities including swap shops, sewing clinics and craft workshops.

The project will conclude with the Northwood ‘CommuniTree’ Resources exhibition featuring items created by local people at the workshops, a 3D CommuniTree sculpture made of recycled plastic bottles and a canopy made from recycled materials such as textiles.

Faiths4Change has received over £7,000 of funding for the project, which comes from the Merseyside Recycling & Waste Authority and Veolia Community Fund 2018/19. The fund was set up to help support waste prevention, re-use and recycling projects locally.

By the end of the project in March 2019, Faiths4Change expect that they will have:

  • Re-used or recycled 6.7 tonnes of materials (including textiles, plastics and bulky family items such as cots and prams)
  • Held 6 Swap Shops for textiles, bulky items and toys
  • Held 12 clothing repair clinics
  • Hosted 64 sewing and craft workshops to create ‘textile tree banners’
  • Delivered recycling guides directly to 500 households
  • Engaged with 8 schools for Bag2School clothing collections

Twelve volunteering opportunities have also been created in partnership with Northwood Community Centre. Faiths4Change are hoping that local volunteers, with the right support, will encourage engagement amongst family, peers and neighbours.

Lou Smith is one local resident for whom the scheme has made a difference. Lou said:

“I’ve been getting involved in the sewing classes, the Pop Up Boutiques and making artwork for the centre. There’s a really nice, friendly atmosphere and it’s been great to dust off the sewing skills I haven’t used for a few years. You just hope that it does have an effect and people in the area will start recycling more – I’m sure they will. It’s a great community and people just need the right information to help them do what they need to do.”