It’s time to help Mrs Average!

Filed in Blog by on September 15, 2010 7 Comments
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African child on a rubbish dump

African child on a rubbish dump

This week Mrs A needs our help. During zero waste week, she worked like a trooper to promote the event and take part herself with the help of her local Saints Cafe so I want to step forward and help her latest passion.

Mrs A had an email from Megan Cockroft, living in Little Karoo, who wants to set up a recycling initiative to help some of South Africa’s poorer communities. Megan set up Blue Crane Recycling three years ago to help people currently living on dump sites and is now looking for funding to sponsor her work. Her first intention is to set up a creche for the youngest children away from the dump-site, where they can get proper food and schooling. The second priority is to help these people to earn an income for themselves by creating self employment opportunities and steady jobs.

Megan’s vision is to set up a recycling facility where a number of people will be employed on a permanent basis, the rest will be used to sort the waste into different categories such as glass, tin, plastic, paper etc. this will be weighed and paid accordingly.

As the business develops Megan wants to incorporate housing facilities for them as well.

People working on the site currently earn the equivalent of £4.50 per week. Megan has done the maths and knows she could offer £36 a week or more which will give workers a much better quality of life. There is great support from the community to make this happen but the Cockcrofts have found it impossible to get funding from the local authorities. That’s why they have turned to the international community to seek help.

Megan is keen to highlight that they are not specifically looking for handouts but opportunities to raise funding for a social enterprise project about which they are very passionate.  And she is committed to paying back every penny of any loans that are offered.

For more details about what Megan is looking for and how you can get involved, read the full story over on ‘The Rubbish Diet’. As you know, I’m passionate about this sort of thing too which is why we set up crisp packet recycling for the Philippine Community Fund. So have a think and see what you can do; it might not be you but a contact you have ….

About the Author ()

I am a long time supporter of the Green and Sustainable lifestyle. After being caught in the Boscastle floods in 2004, our family begun a journey to respect and promote the importance of Earth’s fragile ecosystem, that focussed on reducing waste. Inspired by the beauty and resourcefulness of this wonderful planet, I have published numerous magazine articles on green issues and the author of four books.

Comments (7)

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  1. Thank you so much for featuring this. I know Megan will be chuffed to bits too. Thank you 🙂 xxxxx

  2. Jane says:

    Microloans? http://www.microloanfoundation.org.uk/Home.aspx Take a look at this organisation to see what they do and how far just a little money can go. There’s such a vast difference between wants and needs!

  3. Thanks Jane, that’s a great link. i’ll forward it onto Megan to see if it is something she can apply for. 🙂

  4. Rick Cockcroft says:

    Hi Jane,

    Thank you ,point well taken! Must say from our side (Megan) it was a real eye opener to see how some company’s/businesses ,corporations and governmental institutions (99.9% SA) we have applied for grants and loans have turned us down due to “red tape”

    I think maybe this blog will open a can of worms and many more reality’s we face in our ever changing democracy. We have Karen’s e-mail add and will forward you all our requests/ reply’s from bank loans to other institutions in the hope that something would materialize. As mentioned somewhere in Karen’s blog,we not after handouts – help in any form(e.g society loan,private ) really at the end wont make must difference. It must be clear that all funds are well managed and can be structured in such a way that you receive regular updates etc. even the vehicles have the details of sponsor /donor placed on vehicle. Maybe some food for thought?

  5. Jane says:

    We must remember that many organisations/charities rely on the public’s contributions to do the work that they do. I just happen to have heard of The Microloan Foundation and thought it to be a brilliant idea and was too quick in suggesting that someone else may have the answer. Don’t Sainsbury’s magazine readers support a project somewhere? While we are busy throwing away our one bag of shopping each week the cost of that bag could be providing so much for some of these people who have less than so many of us can imagine.

  6. Jane says:

    Blue Crane Recycling: Any more news? Have they found sponsorship?

  7. Mrs Green says:

    @Jane: no idea Jane, perhaps Mrs A will come along and give us the latest news 🙂

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