By Nuru Ahmed

Global Recycling Day, taking place on 18th March 2020, has already motivated 24 (and counting) organizations and communities across the globe to organize events and initiatives to raise awareness of the significance of recycling and the ways we can turn ‘waste’ into a valuable resource. 

From educational talks in schools to beach clean-ups and performances for local communities, there is a wide range of events taking place, alongside the worldwide ‘Recycling Heroes competition,’ which is accepting entries until 8th March 2020.

The competition recognizes unsung individuals, business or communities that are setting examples and pushing boundaries with their recycling initiatives. 10 winners, each set to receive a $1,000 prize, are due to be announced on 18March 2020.

Ranjit Baxi the Founding President of the Global Recycling Foundation said: “We are proud that some of the most innovative individuals and recycling organizations around the world are joining us to make our third Global Recycling Day a real success. Reaching as many people as possible is crucial in spreading the word on the effects of climate change and how recycling can help.”

 Ranjit also said, “We need to collaborate with as many organizations as possible to combat the climate emergency together, and encourage them to get in touch with the Foundation to share their plans for the day with us.”

Many countries in and outside Africa have organized events going to take place on the Global Recycling Day and they include:

Abuja, Nigeria – Pick That Trash

Pick That Trash, an operational NGO focused on the environment, will be promoting recycling in schools. On 18March 2020 Pick That Trash will visit the Government Secondary School, Maitama, FCT. On 21 March 2020 Pick That Trash will visit Mosquito Village, Dakibiu, Jabi Upstair. FCT. The organisation is also planning clean-up activities to mark Global Recycling Day.

Lagos, Nigeria – U-Recycle Initiative

This year, U-Recycle Initiative is organizing a press conference on 18March 2020 from 7.30am – 8.30am at the National Stadium in Lagos. This will be followed by an awareness walk to mark Global Recycling Day from 10am – 2pm, which will start at the National Stadium in Lagos.

On Thursday 19 March, U-Recycle Initiative will be doing a tour of three local schools in Lagos, with the aim of giving talks to educate them on recycling.

Johannesburg, South Africa – Department of Environmental Affairs

The Department of Environmental Affairs is organizing activations to celebrate Global Recycling Day in Orange Farm, Johannesburg. There will be a march with school children highlighting illegal waste dumping and, in the lead up to the march, work completed by Lesedi la Kreste Primary School in Orange Farm will be showcased. Pupils have also created eco-bricks from 2L PET bottles and filled them with waste material. These eco bricks will be used to build school benches. 

There will also be a clean-up campaign in one of the areas close to the school on Global Recycling Day. Once the area has been cleaned up it will become a vegetable garden for the local community.

Middleburg, South Africa

Global Recycling Foundation Ambassador Ilse Botha, also an environmental and sustainability consultant based in Middleburgh, is organizing a host of activities to celebrate Global Recycling Day.

A Global Recycling Day night race for students at Kanonkop High School; A video on recycling to be shown to students at Kanonkop High School and Sponsorship of recycling bins for Gansiekeur Pre-Primary School and Hoër Tegniese Skool Middelburg

Bath and North East Somerset, UK

Bath and North East Somerset Council is inviting local residents to a series of events on 18 March where people can find out tips and tricks to help save the environment. These talks will take place across libraries in Bath, Keynsham and Midsomer Norton and the Bath Cloth Nappy Library will be on hand to help parents and careers with making the switch from disposables.

Belfast, Northern Ireland – Cap Arts Centre

On 21 March 2020, Cap Arts Centre in Belfast will be organizing a show to celebrate Global Recycling Day. This will include poetry, dance, music and fashion.

Bhubaneswar, India – National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT) & Youth for Sustainable Impact

Youth for Sustainable Impact is partnering with the National Institute of Fashion Technology in India to celebrate Global Recycling Day on both 18 and 19 March. There will be school tours, awareness programs and a competition for students to create products from waste by recycling them (the best product will win a cash prize and will be up for sale).

Bristol, UK – AECOM

AECOM, an international infrastructure firm, is celebrating Global Recycling Day by showcasing a documentary called ‘A Plastic Tide’, supplying plastic-free refreshments and conducting a waste audit of the bins around the office.

Bulgaria – BG Be Active

BG Be Active, an organization dedicated to positive social change sustainable development in Bulgaria, is starting a national campaign and organizing local events in several Bulgarian cities together with local grassroots organizations to promote recycling on 18 March 2020.

Dubai, UAE – Bureau of Middle East Recycling (BMR)

BRM will be marking Global Recycling Day by reaching out to local schools across Dubai, educating school children on the importance of recycling for a sustainable planet. BMR has chosen four schools to educate and will be tree planting in one of Dubai’s industrial districts. 

Ilmenau, Germany – CFF

CFF works to develop natural cellulose fibres across a range of industries. To celebrate Global Recycling Day 2020, CFF will be working with a local school (Staatliche Regelschule gräfinau-Angstedt) encouraging students and teachers to collect wastepaper that CFF can then use for their producing process.

London, United Kingdom

To celebrate Global Recycling Day in London, the Global Recycling Foundation will be holding an event at the House of Commons to recognize UK #RecyclingHeroes and announce plans for a new project in Africa.

Oxford, UK – Sobell House Hospice

In recognition of Global Recycling Day, Oxford Instruments is asking staff members to donate one item every day in March to sell in Sobell House Hospice shops. As well as helping the local hospice raise funds, this initiative also helps with local recycling.

Paris, France – FEDEREC

FEDEREC is running a poster competition for schools to take part in, with finalists work showcased in the Gallerie MR14 in Paris on 18 March 2020.

Portsmouth, UK – Portsmouth Music Hub

Portsmouth Music Hub has written a dedicated #RecyclingHeroes song for local children to sing on Global Recycling Day. This will be filmed and shared across their social media channels. They are also planning a Recycling Rumba.

South Yorkshire, UK – Danieli Centro Recycling

Danieli Centro Recycling in South Yorkshire is holding a ‘plogging’ (jogging and litter-picking) event in conjunction with a local school to celebrate Global Recycling Day. Danieli is also working with Wales High School in Sheffield to organize a litter pick up around the school and local area. Pupils will also have the chance to visit the Danieli Centro Recycling headquarters for an ‘Engineering in Action’ session.

Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia – The Asia Foundation

On 18 March 2020, The Asia Foundation will be launching eight videos on the theme of recycling, including disposing of medicines correctly and re-using plastics and wood scraps.

The Asia Foundation will also be organizing a one-month recycling challenge for its staff, where people are encouraged to bring recyclables from home.

Washington, USA – Ranier Apparel

Ranier Apparel is organizing a beach clean-up for locals on 21 March 2020 at the Purdy Sand Spit from 11am – 1pm. The aim is to collect as much waste and rubbish from the beach and dispose of it correctly.

Other organizations planning events across the world include the Dutch Embassy, the Bureau of International Recycling (BIR) in Brussels and the Inland Importers and Consumers Association (ICCA) in Delhi. These organizations are just a few supporting the Global Recycling Foundation’s #RecyclingHeroes competition.