CASE STUDY: Applying the Five R’s: “Reuse, Reduce, Recycle, Repair, Recover”

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CASE STUDY: Applying the Five R's: "Reuse, Reduce, Recycle, Repair, Recover"

CASE STUDY: Applying the Five R’s: “Reuse, Reduce, Recycle, Repair, Recover”

Did you know that 90% of an estimated 59 million tons of general waste produced in South Africa in 2011 ended up in landfills, while only 10% of this waste was recycled? With the rapid growth in solid waste and the fact that there is a shortage of suitable land to dispose of such waste, South Africa is likely to run out of space for waste disposal in the not too distant future.

The good news is that many corporate and private companies are leading the way in helping to reverse this trend. Organizations are implementing waste reduction measures in their corporate social responsibility programs and measuring the impact of their recycling initiatives towards energy saving, natural resource conservation, pollution reduction, job creation and even poverty alleviation.

The following case study illustrates how an organization implemented the Five R’s “Reuse, Reduce, Recycle, Repair, Recover” into their day-to-day operation and how this led to sustained community development to marginalized, disadvantaged youth.

During a recent office expansion, National Oil and Gas Services South Africa, made contact with Five Tulips to assist with the safe and responsible removal of their second-hand office furniture and equipment. It was envisaged that the items would be re-used, recycled, repaired and recovered to help a Not for Profit company perform their daily operations which was aligned to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

When Five Tulips receives requests like these, it demonstrates a long-term commitment by corporate companies to practice responsible waste management principles (Sustainable Development Goal number 12) by re-purposing their depreciated capital equipment for a cause that contribute to social value.

The Home of Hope Not for Profit Centre was identified as the beneficiary to receive their depreciated goods. The Centre provides education to children with special needs, and helps them to become productive and responsible members of the community by continuing support into adulthood through a working care farm and skills development opportunities.

The Centre was in desperate need of a printer for their children’s home, as well as computer equipment and a working switchboard system. With the re-use of the donated depreciated capital equipment, the Centre was able to increase their productivity with a higher turnaround of printed literature for their community support and youth educational programs. They were also able to receive higher call volumes from donors, volunteers and government bodies, which was made possible with the switchboard system.

By reusing, recycling, repairing and recovering NOV Oil SA’s depreciated furniture and equipment, the Centre is now able to continue their efforts of providing sustainable income for the organisation as a whole, and to continue their educational and skills development programs aimed at delivering job-creation opportunities for underprivileged and special needs youth.

About Home of Hope NPO
Home of Hope is a registered non-profit organisation in South Africa that cares for abandoned and abused children. They offer educational opportunities to children in order to help them reach their full potential in becoming contributing and socially responsible members of society. The Center continues support into adulthood through a working care farm and skills development opportunities.

About the Author:
Yolanda Gossel is the Founder and Programme Director at Five Tulips, a South African based sustainability and corporate social investment (CSI) consultancy. Five Tulips forges partnerships between communities, public and private sectors and individuals for social upliftment and preservation of our planets resources and ecosystems.
To connect with me visit: 

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