Vinnies makes returning and earning easy

A new Bulk Container Deposit Centre in Cardiff is helping local businesses, schools and community groups make a difference to people in need.

Operational since mid-September, an official launch to celebrate the opening will be held on Thursday 8 November at 1.30pm.

Located at Unit 1, 12 Belford Place, Cardiff, the facility offers an efficient way to process large volumes of eligible containers through the NSW Return and Earn Container Deposit Scheme.

The new facility is one of four of its kind to be operated by Vinnies in NSW. With the capacity to sort and count approximately 100,000 containers per day, the bulk processing centre complements existing over-the-counter sites and reverse vending machines across Newcastle and Lake Macquarie.

Boasting automated sorting and counting, and convenient drive-through access, the facility is open from 8.30am to 3.30pm Monday to Saturday. Container deposit refunds can be received on-the-spot via reverse electronic funds transfer (EFT). Facility users can choose to donate some or all of their refund to Vinnies to help support vital services, with tax-deductible receipts issued for donations over $2.

Vinnies Executive Director for Central Councils and Commercial Operations, Peter Knock, explained that the Cardiff facility expanded on the Society’s ethos.

“Our participation in the container deposit scheme is intrinsically linked to the Society’s ongoing commitment to recycling, and is an extension of our retail store philosophy of reuse – helping to divert waste from landfill and supporting those in need at the same time,” he said.

Vinnies is also creating jobs through the scheme. Kevin Chisholm, one of the three staff employed at the centre, was formerly a volunteer with Vinnies Distribution Centre for five years. “I’m now off unemployment benefits, and this role is helping me to pay the bills,” he said.

Since the introduction of the container deposit scheme on 1 December 2017, Vinnies has processed more than nine million containers via its over-the-counter and bulk deposit sites, helping to divert approximately 26,900 cubic metres from landfill: that’s around 290 semi-trailer loads.

Vinnies receives a handling fee for each container processed through the centre, so by simply utilising the facility, users are supporting the provision of much-needed services. Together with donated refunds, proceeds will be used to help run accommodation and support services, such as counselling and case management, for vulnerable and disadvantaged people across the region.

In the 2017-18 financial year alone, the St Vincent de Paul Society Maitland/Newcastle Central Council members, volunteers and staff assisted more than 8,500 people, providing almost $2.8 million in financial support.

Vinnies’ participation in the NSW Container Deposit Scheme was recognised with the Social Responsibility Champion accolade at the 2018 National Retail Awards in August, and more recently, the inaugural Keep Australia Beautiful NSW Return and Earn Litter Prevention Award.

For more information about the Vinnies NSW Container Deposit Scheme initiative, visit www.vinnies.org.au/CDS

To learn more about the Return and Earn program, visit www.returnandearn.org.au

Launch event details

Where: Bulk Container Deposit Centre, Unit 1, 12 Belford Place, Cardiff

When: Thursday 8 November, 1.30pm-3pm