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Startupcycling intro /

eCourse

START UPCYCLING An eBook on upcycling, waste reduction, youth engagement and entrepreneurial learning. 1


Project by

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

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STARTUPCYCLING INTRO

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WHY UPCYCLING?

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ACTIVITIES AND WORKSHOPS

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VOICES

TOOLS FOR UPCYCLING

COLOPHON


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Startupcycling intro /

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STARTUPCYCLING INTRO

This first chapter introduces you to the broader topic of upcycling and it’s multifaceted defining aspects. A broader overview of the StartUpcycling collaboration will also be described to provide you, as the reader, with insight into how the project came about and why there is an urgent need right now to tackle our growing waste problem. 4


Startupcycling intro / 1.1 StartUpcycling

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Startupcycling intro / 1.1 StartUpcycling

Creating change through waste reduction and entrepreneurial learning; that is what this book is all about! The text offers a deeper insight into the learning processes and results of the international project, StartUpcycling.

illustrate the importance of upcycling. The third chapter introduces some of the activities that have been implemented by the different project partners. The activities described throughout the chapter illustrate how broad and diverse the topic of upcycling can be. The most effective teachers tend to be people with both experiences to share and the charisma needed to make learning fun. Because of this, in Chapter 4 we share both our personal experiences of the connections we made during the project and the voices of the people we met along the way. Each personality we encountered offered us new inspiration and ideas of how to promote upcycling and startups. In the final chapter we present some useful educational tools for entrepreneurial learning in the field of upcycling. These can be replicated in other projects and adapted to various situations.

This first chapter of the book introduces you to the background and purpose of the project. You will find out why StartUpcycling was born and how it has played an important role for both the youth participants and the international partners. The collaboration between a range of international project partners for StartUpcycling generated meaningful discussions around waste on a global level. In the second chapter we therefore discuss the importance of, and background to, waste reduction in different contexts worldwide and use these examples to 6


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Startupcycling intro /

1.2 Project background

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Startupcycling intro / 1.2 Background to the project

› In 2014, I was walking through Cape Town and was inspired by the people I saw who were living on the streets and supporting themselves with so few resources. They were creating complex and interesting works of art using old packaging, bottle tops and clothing. In so doing they were helping to tackle the issue of waste that pervades in communities worldwide while also using their own innovation to generate an income. By using this inspiration and building upon existing networks, ‘StartUpcycling’ was born two years later. From these origins the project seeks to empower youth and encourage their engagement with the fields of waste reduction and green entrepreneurship.

impacts on all of us and on the Earth we all share. Society is being forced to find new ways to combat waste, tackle climate change and counter the negative consequences of non-ecological living. At the same time youth unemployment is an acute global problem for both developed and developing countries and is a major contributor to social exclusion and poverty. In many instances it leads to feelings of resignation, frustration and even aggression. A key motivation behind StartUpcycling was the clear need to tackle these problems in tandem. The collaboration of 8 project partners across 4 continents has revealed that although we live in very different realities we have a lot in common. Issues surrounding waste and consumption affect all of the project partners and reveal some of the unpleasant

It should not come as a surprise that waste and pollution are both increasing worldwide and that these increases will have long-term 8


Startupcycling intro / 1.2 Background to the project

› global impacts of climate change. The problems we face in each place are generally the same but the people and cultures that define the nuances of how societies interact with their problems are different. Each part of the world has the potential to teach others something new. Whether it is in a district of Cape Town, the streets of an Italian town or a shop in the middle of Rio de Janeiro, upcycling can connect people looking for new and sustainable forms of expression. It has been an inspiring cooperation thanks to the variety of backgrounds of the people involved.

between the StartUpcycling partners has been a key benefit of the collaboration. It has brought considerable and unique value to the development of a project working with a variety of different people. Communication and teamwork within a diverse group of people can be unpredictable and sometimes challenging. However it was precisely that heterogeneity and the excitement of the people involved that fostered a vibrant group dynamic and enabled positive outputs. The activities and meetings undertaken generated a lot of enthusiasm, motivation and inspiration to continue with this type of work. By implementing new methods and approaches we found that upcycling is one of the best tools to start interesting discussions around waste reduction. It can stimulate new ideas and lead to new perspectives that

The diversity among the youth workers and creative artists has contributed immensely to the variety of outcomes. The intercultural exchange that took place 9


Startupcycling intro / 1.2 Background to the project

› manifest changes in the everyday lives of people. In the following chapters we share this positive spirit with you. As a result you are going to learn more about new ideas and approaches on how to address the topics of waste reduction and entrepreneurship in local communities and youth groups.

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Startupcycling intro /

1.3 An international collaboration

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Startupcycling intro / An international collaboration

› The main focus of StartUpcycling is to raise awareness of the benefits of upcycling as a tool to drive positive global change through its interaction with the youth entrepreneurship. Our aim is to develop innovative ways to promote waste reduction, upcycling and youth employability. In the years 2017 and 2018, the project brought together partner organisations from around the world: WasteLess (India), Upcycling Studio Auroville (India), Fundacja Laja (Poland), Action Synergy (Greece), Onda Carioca (Brazil), SEED (South Africa), Puntozero (Italy), D’Avent Association (Romania) and Starkmacher (Germany). Teams from these organisations provided youngsters with a review of upcycling measures, examples of upcycling in action, established connections with social businesses and international contacts working within the

field, and offered guidance on setting up new green businesses. Generating experiences and enabling good practice are both key to having an impact on someone’s behaviour and thus achieving a transition. That is why the StartUpcycling project focused on interactive and practical learning among youth and youth workers through workshops, training exercises and excursions. StartUpcycling is designed to be a platform for creative exchange, reaching beyond the project partners. That is why we appreciate any opportunity to network with other upcyclers, creative artists, youth workers and enthusiasts with whom we can collaborate and share ideas and experiences. Together, we want to challenge the norm by using upcycling as a new means of providing products, services and solutions.

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Startupcycling intro / An international collaboration

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StartUpcycling follows the principles of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set out by the United Nations in 2015 to strive towards ending poverty, protecting the planet and ensuring that all people enjoy peace and prosperity. The project undertook activities within the following goals: 13


Startupcycling intro / An international collaboration

› Caring for people and for each other:

Goal 4 – Quality Education: Educational methods are used throughout the project to provide a theoretical basis and encourage non-formal learning. During the meetings with youth, various methods were discussed and developed that could be implemented at a local level.

Goal 8 - Good Jobs and Economic Growth: As youth are in a phase of orientation and of choosing their careers, we think that it is most relevant to approach them in this time of their lives and talk about opportunities in the labour market. We also wish to promote economic growth by teaching young people about entrepreneurial approaches in upcycling and by showing them potential opportunities, especially for green startups. The project has thus focused on local workshops and excursions to introduce participants to the main principles of entrepreneurship. 14


Startupcycling intro / An international collaboration

› Caring for the Earth: Caring for each other at a global level means that we need to care for the Earth.

Goal 12 – Responsible Consumption: As upcycling is the core focus of the project, critical consumption, recycling and zero waste were the main topics discussed.

Goal 13 – Climate Action: Another focus lies in understanding the need to actively fight climate change and to provide solutions and positive examples of climate action in order to save our planet. Upcycling is a powerful and highly visible tool through which to achieve that.

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Startupcycling intro / An international collaboration

› Innovative use of surplus: We want to share examples of innovative economic models and of the different ways of living, as demonstrated by sustainable communities. All the methods chosen for the project have been put together and made accessible for everyone to actively participate in. The project also seeks to inspire people outside of the direct project partnership to develop ideas, to gain knowledge and to use the opportunities of green enterprise for waste reduction.

Goal 9 – Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure: StartUpcycling promotes a meaningful exchange about innovative and sustainable products and activities through which to inspire people worldwide. During the local and international meetings we organised visits to innovative startups and to people actively involved in upcycling and waste reduction.

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Startupcycling intro / An international collaboration

› Goal 11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities: The participants were asked to organise an action or event for sustainable transition in order to localise both the SDGs and their idea. Through contact with youth workers, participants received training that enabled them to become agents of change and multipliers of change in their home region. Goal 17 – Partnerships for the Goals: We aimed to develop strong and sustainable bonds to help create future prospects and opportunities for social projects, voluntary services and youth worker exchanges.

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Startupcycling intro /

1.4 More about the ‘why’?

We want to turn waste into entrepreneurial opportunities, because Waste is Cash! 18


Startupcycling intro / 1.4 More about the ‘why’

› The materials we throw away have a high value that can be used to make money. The fact that we do not need to purchase anything to create an upcycled product provides disadvantaged people with the opportunity to gain access to potential business opportunities. We are convinced that if the right tools and approaches are chosen people can use upcycling as a means to secure a sustainable income. Chapter 4 will introduce you to a few entrepreneurial measures we implemented to support youngsters in this regard. Not only can upcycling support people financially, it can play an important role in reducing waste and raising awareness of sustainable living and critical consumption. It is an important contributor to a circular economy that is regenerative and restorative by design. If we do not soon realise the high value of the resources we keep throwing away, the world

is set to transform into a huge rubbish bin, the contents of which we can neither recycle nor reduce any more. The responsible use of materials is key to the resilient value chains of a sustainable future. Once you start to think in this way, there is no more ‘waste’ but only resources of potentially significant value. The responsibility lies with you and I. We need to get creative about how to Rethink our way of living in general. The three Rs make it clear; it is all about Reducing, Reusing and Recycling (more on these in Chapter 2)! Upcycling is a productive means through which to raise awareness around waste reduction and encourage people to reuse our precious resources. Not only is it fun and creative to upcycle, but it also creates the potential for more jobs and employability. However, the best thing about upcycling is that everyone can participate to create special and unique things out of ‘waste’! 19


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Startupcycling intro /

5. Diving into the world of upcycling

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the activity of making new furniture, objects, etc. out of old or used things or waste material: Through her lighting business she shares her love of upcycling and sustainable design. The process or activity of converting old or discarded materials into something useful, beautiful and of higher value. Applying the limitless potential of human creativity to craft products made from waste instead of using ‘new’ materials. Upcycling has a positive impact on the environment especially when it reduces waste destined for final disposal. Opposing our consumer culture by trying new and innovative ways to meet needs using trash instead of going to a shop and buying something new. The act of converting low value waste materials into desirable high-value products.

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Startupcycling intro / 1.5 Diving into the world of upcycling

› Upcycling is a term with diverse associations and definitions. A Google search of the word ‘upcycling’ results in 149,000,000 different links (13th July 2018), none of which appear to be about cycling up a mountain. The search results range from beautiful designer products to easy DIY projects. At first glance, it may seem that upcycling is exclusively for people interested in crafts and artisanal work. In reality, upcycling is for you and I, for people of all kinds. Why? Because it is connected to the stuff around us that is no longer being used. Below you can find different phrases that we think encompass the nuances and various aspects of upcycling.

country is full of these ‘waste’ materials and we need to find a way of reducing this rapidly growing mountain of discarded goods. The first step is to shift our perception of the goods we consume to ensure that we are using them wisely instead of abusing them without thinking. The responsibility lies with us! Upcyclincg, in opposition to our current consumer culture, uses the boundless potential of human creativity to have a positive impact on the environment You may already know of stylish upcycled products made of pallets, bottles, textiles or cans. The variety and possibilities for upcycling are endless.

upcycling In today’s world we tend to be active consumers but quickly forget the value of the items once we no longer use them. Each 23


Startupcycling intro / 1.5 Diving into the world of upcycling

upcycling is more than just creating new objects! 24

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1.6 Upcycling is so much more than creating new objects…

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Startupcycling intro / 1.6 Upcycling is much more

› Upcycling can provide a means to empower youth. It can give young people new perspectives on waste, encourage creative thinking and develop competencies they may not otherwise acquire. StartUpcycling chose different methods of capacity building, especially in the field of entrepreneurial learning, such as teaching the Business Model Canvas (find out more on this topic in Chapter 5 and in our eCourse) and developing a project plan. Upcycling can be a way to inspire new job opportunities. If the product has high value and is attractive to the sale market, you can start your own business by selling your products. There are different ways of setting up a business model, depending on your local market and interests. In some countries, there are upcycling platforms that help to promote your products.

Upcycling can be a way to impact communities through social inclusion. Upcycling collectives and activities can provide a space within which diverse groups of people can come together and share simple creative techniques and visions for the future. Upcycling can be a way of connecting across different generations. Many techniques and ideas inherent to upcycling are not new and examples of their use can be found throughout history. We can easily learn new upcycling life hacks for our homes from our grandparents’ generation. In recent years, life hacks have staged a comeback in industrial countries and have become a popular trend. Furthermore, reusing materials creatively can connect you with elders or youngsters as everyone can take an interest in the process; there is no age limit. 26


Startupcycling intro / 1.6 Upcycling is so much more ...

› Upcycling is also a chance to invest in your own creativity. One can contribute to the health of the environment while also including members of the community who have been looking for new opportunities or have struggled to find their place in the world. And last but most importantly:

models that have a social and sustainable impact, making it easier for anyone to learn something new and eco-friendly.

Expertise plays a serious role. Even though most of the materials necessary for upcycling activities are free, not everyone knows how to produce long lasting quality products from Upcycling reduces the use of new raw them. In the eCourse published by this project materials and thus contributes to a reduction we present some best practice examples of energy usage, air pollution, water pollution shared by experts that show us how to and green house gas emissions. upcycle efficiently and effectively. The motivation behind upcycling activities We have more good news: and businesses can vary. It depends more Anyone can start to upcycle! This is the on the personal background of the upcycler message that we as eco-designers, educators, than on the amount or variety of waste found promoters and awareness raisers are in their surroundings. We have found that constantly endorsing. We are involved with people generally decide to upcycle because: both distribution and awareness raising They want to get creative of upcycling techniques and business They want to raise awareness 27


Startupcycling intro / 1.6 Upcycling is so much more ...

› on waste reduction Their situation demands that they find innovative ways to make money They want to live in an environmentally friendly way They think it is cool Let us return to the example of the people living on the streets of Cape Town. They have a different motivation and goal compared to most of the upcyclers living in Germany. These differences lie in the differing socioeconomic backgrounds and cultures of the people and the situations they inhabit. Belinda Smith from Reuters Germany confirms that upcycling has traditionally been more prevalent in less economically developed countries but has, in recent years, increased in more economically developed countries. While necessity may have driven the

innovation seen on the streets of Cape Town, the increase in creative reuse in other settings appears to be linked to a greater awareness of and level of education in the field of eco-friendly living and climate protection. However, because industrial countries produce significantly more waste it has been argued that they should shoulder the responsibility for the problems it causes. In so doing they could place more focus on reusing materials and less on consumption. With StartUpcycling, we want to inspire and empower not only the youth and youth workers participating in the project but also the people they will work and socialise with in the future. As a result we seek to equip participants to become multipliers of change who will spread their endeavours across wider related networks so that others may learn and benefit as well. 28


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1.7 Outcomes: collecting fruit

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Startupcycling intro / 1.7 Outcomes: Collecting fruit

› StartUpcycling has demonstrated that there are many ways in which to involve young people in upcycling and startup education. The youth workers and educators participating in the project sought to reach as many young people with limited opportunities as was possible. They set up workshops and events in Rio de Janeiro, Auroville, Berlin, Mannheim, Udine, Ciescyn, Athens, Bukarest and Lesvos in order to introduce participants to the topic of upcycling and encourage them to engage with different follow-up activities. The workshops focused on: Upcycling creation Raising awareness on waste reduction Entrepreneurial training You can learn more about these in Chapter 3, where we share some of our educational methods and activities. In June 2018, we launched an eCourse

tailored towards helping young people to learn more about upcycling and green entrepreneurship. The course first focuses on the importance of waste reduction at a global level. It then gives insights into upcycling and introduces various experts and examples in the fields of design, education, promotion and raising awareness. It continues with the principles of green entrepreneurship that include hands-on activities to try out different entrepreneurial and communication tools. Using an interactive approach, the course seeks to challenge young people to come up with their own upcycling and green entrepreneurial ideas. Throughout the course, those taking part can contact the youth workers who developed the materials in order to present their ideas and receive feedback.

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Startupcycling intro / 1.7 Outcomes: Collecting fruit

› The eCourse is free and available through this link: http://www.actione-learn.eu/startupcycling

led to productive engagement and strong bonds between the partners. The exchange with people from India, South Africa, Brazil, Italy, Greece, Poland, Romania and Germany gave a solid The StartUpcycling partner organisations also foundation and inspiration for the work at a set up a series of events and multiplier training local level. Furthermore, the on-going constant sessions intended to reach out to more people exchange via digital media has led to a strong and to present the project more widely. The collaboration at an international level. underlying goal of these activities was not only After a few months of working together, four to actively upcycle but also to support young different startups came into being, thanks to the people in their growth towards environmental inspiration of this project. Through the networks living and to support them in becoming agents created and the multiplier effect sought we are of change for waste reduction. confident that this number will continue to grow as the wider impact of all the activities included Three 10-day meetings were held with in the project are realised. International youth youth workers in Germany, India and South exchanges with a focus on youth employability Africa. These events were full of interpersonal and upcycling have also been developed as a exchange, theoretical and practical learning and result of this project. The global partnerships excursions. The strong collaboration, openness that have been forged provide a strong basis for to contribute and excitement to work together future collaborations and will continue to offer 31


Startupcycling intro / 1.7 Outcomes: Collecting fruit

› opportunities through which to develop more youth mobility programmes such as voluntary services, exchanges and internships. StartUpcycling has been a powerful experience for all the people involved. We strive to continue the network and collaboration to support the youth in our countries and engender change towards a clean and sustainable future.

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Startupcycling intro /

2

WHY UPCYCLING?

The planet and our resources are finite. Yet we have adopted production patterns that are linear and are resulting in the depletion of our shared resources. Nature offers us countless examples of how a cyclical system works without producing any so called ‘waste’. In this chapter we show how upcycling offers a valuable means of turning our ‘waste’ into useful and beautiful products. 33


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Why upcycling? / Changing the game

2.1 Changing the game (shifting design thinking mindsets)

The world is flat. Infinite growth on a finite planet is possible. Technology will solve all of our problems.

more than most people realise. Our planet cannot handle it, and neither can we. It is time to change.

We all know the world is not flat. But what about challenging our thinking and attitudes towards growth or technology?

One of the fundamental mindsets to change is our design thinking, or the way we think about how things are designed and made.

It is time to wake up and smell the coffee. The way we use and discard products is quickly destroying the earth and damaging our health

Most products are designed for a linear system or economy where materials flow in a straight line. 35

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Why upcycling? / Changing the game

› For example, we take limited and valuable natural resources from our planet like oil. The oil is then refined to make a plastic bag. We use this bag for a very short time to carry shopping home from a supermarket, and then we throw the bag in the waste bin. This system carries precious materials in a straight line right from wherever they were extracted (oil field) to factories (refineries), shops, our home, the bin and finally a landfill or incinerator. At every step along the way this system creates pollution with long-term impacts. In terms of the legacy that we will leave for future generations this is one of the biggest mistakes we are making.

As consumers, our thinking has been moulded by this linear system. This paradigm shapes the ways in which products are designed but it needs to change. Design thinking has the power to shift this global system towards something more sustainable. What is more sustainable than nature? Nature’s systems are abundant, beautiful and, most importantly, resources flow in endless cycles. There is no start or finish and so the concept of waste simply does not exist. Think of a tree. We have over 3 trillion of them on the planet–that is more than 400 trees for every person alive today. A tree is designed to take nutrients from the soil. It uses them to grow in size and produce leaves, flowers and fruits. When leaves fall off the tree they quickly decompose and the nutrients return to the 36


Why upcycling? / Changing the game

› soil where they can be used again by the tree or even by other plants. The flowers of the tree contain sweet nectar that attracts pollinators and keeps the gene pool diverse. The natural sugar content and flavour of the tree’s fruits are specially designed for birds to eat. The bird’s digestive system helps germinate the seeds contained within the fruit and ensure that they are spread far and wide. Fact text box: - We take about 8% of global oil or gas production to make plastics - We make 2 million plastic bags every minute - The verage useful life of a plastic bag is just 20 minutes - Once in the waste bin 97% of plastic bags never get recycled

There is no waste in this intricate system because everything is a resource. Although a tree’s leaves, flowers and fruits may fall to the ground, their role in nature’s cyclical system ensures that nothing is without value. This system has evolved over time and is beautiful, useful and adds value wherever it grows. Unfortunately we do not have the luxury of endless time within which to change the game. We cannot follow the tree’s example and wait for the trial and error approach of evolution to create the perfect system. However, we can learn from nature. We can harness the limitless potential of human creativity and design waste out of our systems. You might believe that this is only design thinking and wonder what practical action you can take in your daily life to fight pollution and manage your waste responsibly. Fortunately there are many things you can do to help. Read on to explore some 37


Why upcycling? / Changing the game

of the leading theories on waste and learn how to ‘close the tap’ on your garbage!

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2.2 Closing the tap

Why upcycling? / Closing the tap

Picture a tap in your kitchen or bathroom at home. Now imagine yourself opening it completely and, while the water gushes out at its maximum force, picture yourself leaving your home for the day. As evening approaches, you return home to find your home flooded. You are standing ankle deep in water and the tap is still running. You see your mop and a bucket and the running tap. What would you do first, start mopping up the water or turn off the tap?

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Why upcycling? / Closing the tap

If you would start tackling the problem by mopping without turning off the tap, we think it is probably best you stop reading this eBook now and seek some help. It is clear that most of us would first deal with the source of the problem and close the tap before starting to mop up the water.

It has become increasingly clear that, when it comes to waste management, no amount of mopping will be fast enough. We cannot mop ourselves out of this global problem. It is now time to start closing the tap on waste.

This simple example can help us challenge the way we approach waste management. 90% of global waste management strategies focus on methods that equate to mopping (collection, some recycling and disposal of waste). Consider your own life and how, when you think of waste management, you might picture swanky colour coded bins, recycling, and feeling good when you buy a recycled product or pick up litter. While all of these things are good, they only represent one small part of the solution. 40


2.3 The 3 R’s

Closing the tap is a clear and logical step.

Why upcycling? / The 3 R’s

It also fits perfectly with the concept of the 3 R’s. The 3 R’s are extremely popular and have been used very often; almost all of us know them by heart. The three words roll off our tongues without any difficulty: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. Reduce: This is so simple that it often gets overlooked as a viable solution to waste management. Waste avoidance and reduction rubs against the very fibre of our consumer culture where the importance of economic growth outweighs its implications for our quality of life. In this global economy few governments actually include this as an important part of their waste management strategy. However, according to Albert Einstein, ‘a clever person solves a problem. A wise person avoids it’.

Reuse: Since the beginning of time, humans have loved reusing stuff. But in the last 70 years, our economic system has changed. The game has changed. It is now cheaper, more convenient and completely culturally acceptable to use something once and then throw it away instead of reusing it. Think of the humble disposable plastic spoon. We drill the earth for non-renewable fossil fuel (oil or gas), refine it to make the building blocks of plastics, colour and mould this plastic into a spoon. Then we ship it around the world and use the spoon for 30 minutes or less to eat a meal on the go. When we are done we throw it away and this very spoon will likely live in a landfill for the next 500-1,000 years. In our current society, we accept this as being a better choice to reusing a stainless steel spoon over and over again by simply washing our dishes. Recycle: This is by far the most glamorous of the 3 R’s. Recycling makes us feel good. It gives us 41


Why upcycling? / The 3 R’s

› the fuzzy feeling of doing the right thing without us actually having to do very much at all. We believe that if we do our duty and put our recyclables in the correct bin, we have done a good job. This is true, recycling is great. It saves precious resources and provides raw materials for new products in a circular economy. All the care we put into separating our waste and putting it in the correct bin usually means that waste in a recycling bin is cleaner. Clean waste is considered ‘premium’ waste, as it can be easily upcycled. However, it is important to remember that recycling on its own is not going to solve our global waste problem. This is why it is the third ‘R’ and should only be used in situations where reduce and reuse have not been possible. Learn more about why these 3 R’s are in a specific order and how they were developed from the waste hierarchy. 42


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Why upcycling? / The Waste Hierarchy

2.4 The Waste Hierarchy:

The waste hierarchy, also known as the waste pyramid, is the current leading waste management strategy around the world. It represents an order of actions to manage waste from the best thing to do (avoidance) to the worst thing to do (disposal). Based on Lansink’s Ladder from the late 70s, this model indicates an order of preference for action on how to manage waste that ranges from what is the best option for the environment at the top of the pyramid to what is the worst outcome for the environment at the bottom. When it comes to waste, the best thing to do is to decrease the amount you produce by avoiding and reducing rather than recycling or disposing. Let us use the example of a disposable plastic bag to walk you through the levels of the waste hierarchy 43


Why upcycling? / The Waste Hierarchy

Waste hierarchy for a plastic carry bag: Avoid: do not accept a plastic bag when shopping. Carry your own reusable bag so that fewer plastic bags have to be made and fewer end up as waste.

fit to be used for shopping, instead of recycling it or throwing it away, turn it into something useful or beautiful. In this way you create something of a higher value and give the plastic bag a new purpose.

Recycle: if your plastic bag cannot be reused or upcycled it can be cleaned and melted to Reduce: you can decrease the number of be turned into something new; another plastic plastic bags you get by only accepting better bag, a seedling bag to grow plants in, or even quality bags that are more durable and will a window or door frame. Note: every time hold more items. plastic is melted and recycled it loses quality. The process is called ‘downcycling’ because Reuse: keep using the same bag when you go products that are made from recycled plastic shopping instead of using a new one. This only are of lower quality than the original products. works when you choose better quality (thicker and stronger) plastic bags or replace them with Landfill: once you can no longer use your cloth bags. plastic bag then you need to throw it away. If your plastic bag is not separated from other Upcycle: once your plastic bag is no longer waste streams, collected and recycled, then it 44


Why upcycling? / The Waste Hierarchy

› Open dump: the plastic bag you throw away might end up in a big pile with lots of other waste. This is especially the case if you live in an emerging economy where this is the most common disposal method. It is estimated that 40% of the waste we generate on the planet finds its final resting place in an unregulated open dump. Unlike a landfill, a dump is Incinerate: when your plastic bag cannot open to, and interacts with, the surrounding be recycled because there is no collection and environment and animals. Through weather recycling system in place, then it may end conditions (UV rays and rain) the waste ends up being incinerated, a process where the up polluting the surrounding environment. plastic bag is burned at high temperatures. The waste starts to degrade and decompose The heat that gets released from burning the and mix with leachate from organic waste plastic bag can be used to produce electricity. and rainwater. This then seeps into soil and Unfortunately, burning waste creates very toxic gases that pollute the air you breathe and is not eventually makes its way to the water table. good for your health. The toxic ash produced by Animals are attracted by the leftover food often found in plastic waste. This has a serious the burning is water-soluble and can easily get negative impact on their health. carried by the wind and spread throughout the surrounding environment, causing pollution. might be disposed of along with other waste, into a huge hole in the ground. Even though a landfill has different layers that seal the waste off form the environment, the plastic bag will live in the landfill for close to forever – or what scientists estimate will be a very long time.

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Why upcycling? / The Waste Hierarchy

› We can all make a difference by reducing the amount of waste we produce and throw away. As the waste hierarchy neatly illustrates, the best thing to do is to not create waste in the first place. You can avoid certain types of waste by using alternatives. A prime example is the opportunity to avoid the use of a plastic bag while shopping by taking your own cloth bag.

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Why upcycling? / Useful definitions

2.5 Useful definitions

In the first chapter several definitions of upcycling were given. Perhaps because it is a relatively new term, upcycling is often confused with recycling. In the section below, the differences between upcycling and recycling are explored. We have also included a definition of downcycling, exemplified through plastics to help you challenge your ideas on the world of waste and reflect on your life and habits. Recycling (Noun): The process of breaking down a waste item into its basic parts – be it melted glass, paper pulp or plastic polymers – and then using these materials to make new products. Recycling is often an industrial process that uses lots of energy and water. However, it prevents the loss of resources from the things we throw away and reduces the consumption of fresh raw materials. Downcycling (Noun): Traditional recycling is often described as downcycling. This can be for two

reasons. The first is because when we break waste items down into their basic parts, the industrial process often degrades the materials so that they are of lesser value or poorer functionality. The second is due to the fact that waste in a recycling plant comes from different brands that manufacture their products in many different factories. All of these products have different chemical combinations and are thus slightly different. For example, if we take a plastic bottle and break it down into its basic parts, we can make fibre for a carpet. The bottle will never be a bottle again. It will continue in a downward spiral of lesser value and functionality. The plastic in the bottle loses quality every time it is broken down and melted. But all plastic bottles are not the same – some have a different thickness, rigidity or colour. When we blend all these plastic bottles together – the result is a lower (downcycled) quality plastic that will never be a bottle again. 47


Why upcycling? / Useful definitions

Upcycling on the other hand creates products from waste that are of higher value, useful (increased functionality) and beautiful. By diverting challenging waste streams away from landfills you can really create a positive impact (refer to the top 10 waste items at the end of this chapter). Recycling breaks down waste items into their basic parts and then uses these to make new things. The industrial process often uses a lot of energy and water. Downcycling breaks down waste items into basic parts and then makes news things that are actually of less value and poorer functionality than the original waste item.

You may be thinking: “Why upcycling? We need to produce less waste, not find ways to make it more attractive!” Of course, we do need to simultaneously tackle the root of the problem and find a way to avoid producing more and more waste. However, the current global economy, with all its industries and unequal power structures, will not easily let us experience a waste-less world. We therefore need to find alternative ways to re-value the materials and resources around us and to create awareness of fair and sustainable consumption patterns. Upcycling can help to change mindsets by making people more aware and conscious of the waste problem. It provides a means of directly engaging people with the issue of waste management and in this way helps to lead to better solutions.

Still confused? Check out this cool infographic https://hipcycle.com/upcycling-infographic 48


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2.6 Waste in each country

Why upcycling? / Waste in each country

Capita per day waste production (kg/day)

0,50

0,70

0,81

1,05

1,35

1,39

1,69

India

South Africa

Poland

Brazil

Italy

Greece

Germany

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Why upcycling? / Global Top 10 Worst Waste Items

Global Top 10 worst waste items The StartUpcycling project has been an incredible learning experience. The exchange in this Erasmus + programme has given all partners fantastic insights. One of the key insights is the fact that we all generate waste and some of these waste streams are exactly the same across the globe. Some of the most common packaging items cause problems for waste management systems across the globe.

waste management strategy can change the way you live and work. The per capita waste production helped all of us reflect on how our lifestyles and geographic location impact the planet.

While all of our realities are different, we all share this planet and we’re all trashing it with the same types of garbage. As a conclusion for this chapter, we wanted to share the global top 10 waste items and a little inspiration on how these ‘bad boys’ in Upcycling can be a positive tool for working our bins could be upcycled. These top 10 waste towards global solutions to some of these massive items cause problems for recyclers, waste collectors waste challenges. As we explained at the start of and the environment across the globe. They are this chapter, a shift in our mindsets is extremely important. Using nature as inspiration for our design the perfect starting point for upcycling. If you can find value in these items, you will not only ensure thinking, we can design waste out of systems and you have an unlimited supply of raw materials create a truly circular economy. However, this is a but you will actually be making a really positive long-term transformation that will take time. If you want to change something in your life that costs you environmental impact by finding a new life for these difficult to deal with waste items. absolutely no extra money – you can close the tap by reducing the amount of waste you generate in the first place. Using the waste hierarchy as a model for decision making, you can see how the most effective 50


Why upcycling? / Global Top 10 Worst Waste Items

› is a recycling disaster. However, these packets are strong, colourful and can be found everywhere, providing an excellent material to upcycle.

Multi-layer foil packaging: This type of packaging is found everywhere. Think of a chip packet or coffee packaging that is shiny on the inside (aluminium) and is printed on the outside. This multi-layer foil packaging is usually a sandwich of two different types of plastic and a metal such as aluminium. These plastics may melt at different temperatures and so recycling them together is not possible. The aluminium is recycled in a very different way, so having metal mixed with plastic

This intricate upcycled sunglasses case uses the protective properties of the multi-layer foil packaging to keep your sunglasses safe from getting scratched. Made by weaving together strands of a chip packet (without using glue) and stitched by our very own upcycling expert, Patricia. 51


Why upcycling? / Global Top 10 Worst Waste Items

› 2. Thin plastic bags: At number two on the list are plastic bags, which are a menace to the planet. Our worldwide use of these bags has skyrocketed to an insane 2 million bags every minute. And what is even more terrifying is that we only recycle 3% of all of these bags. Most plastic bags end up in landfills, incinerators or, even worse, in the environment.

Plastic bags provide an excellent material for upcycling. However, if you want to help the planet you must make sure to source used plastic bags (post-consumer) and not ones straight from the factory (post production). Check out this intricately knitted beautifully upcycled bowl created by our talented upcycler partner, Patricia.

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Why upcycling? / Global Top 10 Worst Waste Items

› 3. PVC banners: PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride also called Vinyl or Flex) is the most toxic plastic in the world. Toxic chemicals such as phthalates (also known as plasticizers) and heavy metals (such as cadmium and lead) are added to PVC (plastic resin code #3). If PVC plastic comes into contact with heat (under 800 degrees Celsius) it releases one of the worst man-made chemicals known, called dioxins. What is worse, one PVC bottle can spoil the recycling of 100,000 PET (plastic resin code #1) plastic bottles. Vinyl banners (made of PVC) are used across the globe for marketing and communication and while recycling them is technically possible, the toxic material and solventbased inks make recycling dangerous.

Upcycling this waste is therefore better than recycling. Especially if it is used for rugged and outdoor use as these banners are strong, waterproof and UV resistant. Check out this neat shopping bag made from a flex banner from an anti-litter campaign.

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Why upcycling? / Global Top 10 Worst Waste Items

› 4. Polycarbonate plastic: (plastic resin code #7 or acronym PC) contain a toxic additive called bisphenol A (BPA) that is not good for your health. BPA is an Endocrine Disrupting Chemical (EDC). EDCs confuse our bodies by acting like our natural hormones. Hormones are part of our chemical communication system and control the way our cells and organs work. BPA increases or decreases certain hormones and changes the way our bodies work. This bad plastic is a good candidate for upcycling if it is does not come into contact with food or beverages.

Checkout the beautiful installation art piece from the StartUpcycling project partner, Ok, who used over 12,000 CDs to create a waterfall.

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Why upcycling? / Global Top 10 Worst Waste Items

› 5. Polystyrene: Polystyrene (plastic resin code #6 or acronym PS, EPS) is another one to make it into the global top 10 worst waste items for three reasons. Firstly, it is composed of the toxic building blocks benzene and styrene. Both are linked to cancer. Secondly, it is extremely persistent in the environment. Scientists estimate that it can take up to 1 million years to break down. Thirdly, it is widely used for disposable products such as takeaway food packaging, spoons, cups, plates, pens, lighters, disposable cooler boxes and more. The foamed version of this plastic contains 95% air and is often called by its trade name ‘Styrofoam’; but its technical name is EPS (Expanded Polystyrene).

The air in EPS is great to use as filling for a bean bag, for example. The Styrofoam can be crushed by hand, as shown in this picture, or machine crushed into EPS pearls. Check out the fantastic quality upcycled sails used to make bean bags by the Spanish Upcycling design studio DVELAS.

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Why upcycling? / Global Top 10 Worst Waste Items

› 6. E-waste: Electronic waste, or the waste from electrical and electronic equipment, is one of the fastest growing waste streams worldwide. Common things like laptops, computers, TVs, mobile phones, tablets and chargers are all e-waste. E-waste is a complex mix of different materials, many of which are toxic. Improper disposal and recycling of e-waste can be terrible for the environment. Many electronics are built using precious resources called ‘rare earth elements’. Most of these resources come from conflict zones where human rights are not respected and, as the name implies - there are not a whole lot of them available so we need to reduce, reuse and recycle.

Upcycling E-waste is challenging, but if done creatively, can be very cool and long lasting. One important aspect to consider is the functionality of the material. If a material is designed to be flame retardant, then it makes sense to use this material for applications where this functionality is required. Check out this fantastic lamp design by Nolan Herbut who has used keyboards to create an amazing hanging light.

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Why upcycling? / Global Top 10 Worst Waste Items

› 7. Fabric: Think of your grandparents’ wardrobe and now compare it to yours? What is one big glaring difference other than the style of clothes? Most of us have more clothes and use them for shorter amounts of time. We buy more clothes, they go ‘out of fashion’ faster and we throw them away much more quickly than our grandparents ever did. Cotton and polyester, two popular materials for textile fabric, have massively polluting lifecycles. Throwing them away therefore promotes a toxic and wasteful system whereas upcycling helps to give them new life with a real positive environmental impact.

blended cotton with polyester and some are purely plastic (like polyester or acrylic). This is a recycling nightmare as they need to be separated first. Upcycling is a good way to delay this nightmare and can use different materials in one piece. Upcycling fabrics can be really fun and exciting. You can use colours, textures and simple methods to bring life to old waste. Check out this fantastic Panda finger puppet made by our talented team partner, Patricia.

If you look at this picture of fabric waste, you will see that it is a mix of different pieces, many of which are of different materials. For example, some fabrics in the picture are 100% cotton, some are 57


Why upcycling? / Global Top 10 Worst Waste Items

› 8. Footwear (including shoes & slippers): Our global society loves shoes. We love them so much that our demand has doubled every 20 years. Today we buy an estimated 20 billion pairs every year. 95% of these never make it to a recycling facility and get burned, dumped in landfills or, worse, pollute the environment. Recycling shoes is challenging. In the waste stream they are all different and each one is a mix of different materials like leather, PVC plastic, rubber, different textiles, metals, foam and glues.

Upcycling footwear is challenging but comes as a huge benefit to the environment. Flip flops (or slippers) are a massive problem in marine debris and regularly wash up on our beaches. The amazing organisation Ocean Sole, based in Kenya, have found a very creative way to upcycle waste flip flops washed up along beaches into beautiful foam animals and customised art pieces. 58


Why upcycling? / Global Top 10 Worst Waste Items

› 9. Tyres: Tyres (from cars, trucks, etc.) are a big global challenge. They are often blended with different materials, contain metal wires and are dirty. They are also heavy, bulky and break down. In landfills they can puncture or break landfill liners, thereby spreading pollution. In the environment, they catch water and contribute to the spread of dangerous vector-borne diseases like malaria and dengue. If they are illegally dumped, they are often burned in tyre fires that create a thick black smoke filled with dangerous toxins. This type of waste therefore makes it onto our top 10 list as it is difficult to recycle but is used everywhere (so the waste is easy to find). Removing tyres from the environment helps to reduce pollution.

Tyres can be easily upcycled. They are strong and the structure of the material is often not damaged, they are just discarded because the tread (grip) is worn out. One way of using the structure is in furniture. It can be an excellent way of upcycling different waste materials like fabric, rope and offcuts. Check out this beautiful upcycled cushion chair made from a car tyre by our partner upcycler, Małgorzata.

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Why upcycling? / Global Top 10 Worst Waste Items

› 10. Mirror/Window glass: This type of glass is of a different composition than the glass used for bottles and is therefore not recycled in the same way. Recycling factories for window and mirror glass are not very common and transporting this waste is both difficult and expensive.

Although glass is inert and does not pollute the environment as much as other types of waste in this list it takes a lot of energy to produce and is thus a real waste if just dumped. Window and mirror glass is often combined with wood, aluminium or plastics, making it labour intensive and expensive to separate. Upcycling can be simple and super creative. If you can find different windows or glass pieces, you can use them together to create something new without having to destroy the original material (i.e. by breaking the frames and removing the glass). Check out this upcycled greenhouse, built by one of our project partner’s friends in Europe. It is creative and can be endlessly reused and repurposed. Upcycled material that truly adds value to our lives is the key to unlocking the potential value in waste materials.

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Startupcycling intro /

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Startupcycling intro /

3

ACTIVITIES & WORKSHOPS

The StartUpcycling project is a collaboration between different partner organisations from around the world, all actively engaged in working towards a more sustainable lifestyle pattern. This chapter highlights some of the projects that the different groups have worked on in the past years and provides you with some case studies of the types of upcycling activities and projects that can undertaken. 62


Startupcycling intro /

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63


Activities & workshops / intro

› As discussed in Chapter 1, upcycling can be much more than just being creative. There is an abundance of things you can do to raise awareness on waste reduction, to speak about start-up creations or simply to bring people together through upcycling activities. In our StartUpcycling project, 8 organisations from around the world developed and implemented activities at a local level, each with a specific focus on education. The following chapter is comprised of summaries of some of the projects that the partner organisations undertook. They are intended to provide you with some insight into the diversity of topics and materials that are addressed within upcycling. You will see that they differ from country to country because of different localities, target groups and project focus. This chapter may inspire you to find new and attractive ways of working with upcycling

measures. It is mainly targeted at educators and youth who want to learn how to implement certain methods and tools. If you like any of the methods described and wish to replicate them in your town, we would like to hear back from you and see how you did it. There is much that we can learn from one another!

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› BRAZIL -

Waste management workshop for homeless people

Activities & workshops / BRAZIL

Name of the activity Upcycling / Recycling / Waste Management Workshop for homeless people

Developed products Upcycled products made out of vinyl canvas and recycled products made out of paper, wood, and Tetra Paks

Number of participants 15 - 20

Name of the promoting organization Onda Carioca

Age of participants 5 - 22 years of age Period and duration December 23rd 2017 - 3 hours Place of activity Occupation factory of homeless people, Pavuna, Rio de Janeiro City

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Activities & workshops / BRAZIL

Activity description: Attendees to an occupation factory for homeless people located in an abandoned factory in Pavuna, north of Rio de Janeiro city, were invited to attend a presentation on recycling, upcycling, waste management and our project ‘StartUpcycling’. The workshop began with a talk that sought to engage the children, and youngsters more generally, about waste, consumption, habits, good practices for recycling and upcycling and the basics of segregation and disposal of garbage. The participants were very interested in understanding how they could improve their waste collection inside the occupation factory in order to separate recyclable, non-recyclable and organic waste. This process of separation will help to alleviate existing problems with the spread of vectors and contamination throughout the factory. The presentation was given at the shelter and in addition to the focus on waste management topics and the StartUpcycling project concept, Onda Carioca’s upcycling activities on vinyl canvas were presented and a selection of upcycled products put on display. Two artists of the occupation factory also exhibited paintings and their upcycling potential. The main topics covered by the workshop were: What is waste and how does it impact the environment and our health? 66


Activities & workshops / BRAZIL

The importance of collecting, segregating, upcycling, recycling, correct waste disposal and final destination: The 3 R’s – Reduce, Reuse (upcycling) and Recycle. The StartUpcycling project and its intellectual outputs. Onda Carioca’s vinyl canvas upcycled products. The value of waste, opportunities, social transformation, empowerment and entrepreneurship on upcycling. This workshop was useful for the children and youngsters of this occupation as it opened their minds to a greater awareness of waste pollution and the associated problems, risks and impacts for our planet, species and health.

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68


› BRAZIL -

Workshop and upcycling puzzle game for children

Activities & workshops / BRAZIL

Name of the activity Workshop and upcycling puzzle game for children and meeting with ‘upcycler’ urban artist Acme Number of participants 5 - 10

Developed products Upcycled puzzle game and masterpieces made of wood / metal waste Name of the promoting organization Onda Carioca

Age of participants 5 - 12 years of age Period and duration May 26th, 2018 - 4 hours Place of activity Favela do Pavão Pavãozinho e Cantagalo, Copacabana, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil 69


› Activity description

Activities & workshops / BRAZIL

The format of this event was an upcycling workshop and meeting followed by activities with the urban artist, graffiti painter and ‘upcycler’ Acme and children in the favela Pavão, Pavãozinho and Cantagalo. Initially, a game was made to assemble puzzles with reusable pieces of wood. The goal was to stimulate creative and logical thinking, to arouse the children’s playful curiosity through the handling of upcycled pieces. In so doing the seed of the concept of our project, ‘StartUpcycling’ was planted. Due to a conflict in the favela between drug-dealers and police the workshop was shifted from the morning to the afternoon and only a few children from the outskirts were able to take part. Those who could participate visited the atelier where some of Acme’s artworks were presented and a testimonial of the artist was filmed. Acme’s upcycling pieces are embedded in the ecological and social context in which graphite connects to design projects with the reuse of waste and recyclable materials of wood and metal. The interior of the atelier is permeated by an atmosphere of inspiration and creativity with several masterpieces exhibited and assembled over the last years. In addition to collaborating with Onda Carioca’s team through upcycling, graffiti, design and plastic arts, Acme will also be participating in our next upcycling workshop with the youth 70


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Activities & workshops / BRAZIL

of the TerreirĂŁo favela. This social project will focus on sustainable furniture made of industrial waste materials and recyclables in the Plaza de Futuro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

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› GERMANY -

Building a sensory path for children

Activities & workshops / GERMANY

Name of the activity: Building a sensory path for children Number of participants 10

Name of the promoting organization: Kolping Jugendgemeinschaftsdienste, Laura Konieczny (Zero Waste Your Life)

Age of participants 18 - 25 years of age Period and duration 7th - 4th March, 2018 - 1 week Place of activity Mitchell’s Plain, Cape Town, South Africa Developed products Sensory Path 73


Activities & workshops / GERMANY

Activity description:

As part of a German - South African youth exchange, a group of ten young adults volunteered at Gerard’s Educare, an early childhood development center in Mitchell’s Plain, a part of Cape Town. The Créche had wanted to have a sensory path for the children for quite some time and had already collected the funds to buy wood and other construction material. The volunteers were asked to get creative regarding the design of the path and came up with the idea to use only natural and upcycled materials. Their aim was to not only enhance the children’s sensory skills but also their knowledge on environmental issues such as recycling and upcycling. The materials used for construction of the path were collected in the area surrounding the facility and donated by the children’s families and the participant’s host families. Divided into seven sections, the finished path is made up of numerous different materials. Each section stimulates one or more different senses and is made from different upcycled materials allowing the children to experience different sensations as they walk through it.

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Activities & workshops / GERMANY

Section

Materials

Senses/ Educational purpose

Entrance

Wooden board, recycled

Tyre Hopping

Worn-out car and giant truck tyres, paint

Wooden Bridge

Wood

Wind chime

Painted wooden frame, seashells, empty soda cans, empty plastic bottles filled with beads and stones, reused beads and strings

Touch, hear

‘Car wash’

Wooden frame, scrap textiles/ cut-up cloths, strings, little bells, reused parts of broken instruments (bells, rattles, cymbal)

Feel, hear

Touch boxes

Wooden cable reel, empty gallon jugs, feathers, leftover crafting materials, assorted carpet tiles

Touch, hear

Garden

Worn-out car tyres, paint, seedlings from children’s family gardens

Smell, learn about fruits, vegetables and herbs

Move, see, learn concept of over and under


Activities & workshops / GERMANY

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› GERMANY -

Mapping Upcycling Start-ups

Activities & workshops / GERMANY

Name of the activity: Mapping Upcycling Start-ups

Name of the promoting organization: Starkmacher e.V. in collaboration with IdeenÂł

Number of participants 5-15 Age of participants 16 years and above Period and duration minimum 3 hours Place of activity *no specific location* (online) Developed products Online Map 77


Activities & workshops / GERMANY

Activity description The world is full of explorers, and full of things to be explored: The Map of tomorrow is an online platform that aims to collect initiatives and bring together companies that are striving for sustainability and an ecofriendly transition at a societal level. The interactive map shows places in your area that are already committed to the ‘world of tomorrow’. Following the wiki-principle, all users, projects and companies can mark themselves and others on the map and thus reach both their own community and others who are yet to discover them. It is an easy to use online tool and an open resource that everyone can use to connect people and to enhance the visibility of nearby sustainable spots. This workshop consists of a discovery tour of 3 - 9 hours focusing on local green startups and upcycling entrepreneurs. The workshop can either introduce a group to the topic of green entrepreneurship or it can be offered as a follow-up when a group has already been through the principles of green entrepreneurship. The map includes labels/filters like ‘upcycling’,’start-up’ and ‘green entrepreneur’. Workshop participants are asked to do research and first find entries of green and social start-ups in the close surrounding. Afterwards, they think about places that are not yet part of the map and embed those contacts on the map. After the research, they plan a tour (walking, bike or public transport) and 78


Activities & workshops / GERMANY

visit the spots they are most interested in. They inform the entrepreneurs they visit about the new entry on the map and interview them to unearth the stories behind how they became entrepreneurs. The discoveries and excursions undertaken through the workshop may also be combined with a digital version of treasure hunting through ‘Actionbound’, an app for playing digitally interactive scavenger hunts that lead the user on a path of discovery. The workshop participants will be introduced to the functions of the app so that they can create their own guided tours and treasure hunts that include the sustainable spots identified on the map.

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› GERMANY -

Job orientation through upcycling

Activities & workshops / GERMANY

Name of the activity: Job orientation through upcycling Number of participants 5 - 15

Name of the promoting organization: Starkmacher e.V. in collaboration with Joblinge and Trial&Error

Age of participants 18 - 25 years of age Period and duration 4 days Place of activity Berlin Developed products Prototypes of phone holders 80


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Activities & workshops / GERMANY

Activity description:

The upcycling workshop was offered to seven young refugees who were taking part in a programme for job orientation. By developing a range of skills through self-guided learning, the participants were encouraged to discover how upcycling can be a potential job opportunity given the huge quantity of waste produced worldwide. The workshops were implemented in a seminar room and workshop space with various options and tools available to the participants to enable them to create things together. Here is a broad overview of the workshop: Day1: Goal: Introduction to the project and its focus on working with waste products Content: Introduction to the principles of waste reduction and upcycling. Talk on the importance of waste reduction. Quiz: How long does it take for different materials to decompose or disappear? Trash awareness walk through the neighbourhood. What to do with waste – developing strategies and ideas of waste reduction. Easy upcycling with Tetra Paks: Creating wallets.

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Activities & workshops / GERMANY

Day2: Goal: Experiencing upcycling and developing creative ideas Content: Exploring the choice of tools for upcycling creation. Choosing an item to be upcycled. Developing an upcycling product: Upcycling a chair with old bike tubes. Day3: Goal: Developing personal projects Content: Introduction to the basics of project development. Idea framing: Creating your own project cycle. Personal research and development. Presenting and discussing the Canvas business model. Discussing the results of the ideas developed and choosing a favourite to be implemented in the next meeting. Brainstorming: where can I get my materials (strategically collecting at recycling companies, local shops, scrap dealers, collection points etc.)? Asking the participants to work on their ideas until the next meeting.

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Activities & workshops / GERMANY

› Day4: Goal: Creating an upcycled product Content: Creative collaboration: developing a phone holder each. Presenting the resulting phone holders with an emphasis on materials, motivation and background of the idea. Discussion on how to make money with such products. Turbo-Upcycling-Session: Creating an upcycling character together in 10 minutes without speaking. Outlook: How to go further, where can you continue this kind of work?

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Activities & workshops / GERMANY

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› GERMANY -

Building a Vertical Micro Garden

Activities & workshops / GERMANY

Name of the activity Building a Vertical Micro Garden Number of participants 15

Name of the promoting organization Starkmacher e.V. in cooperation with students of the Mannheim Business School

Age of participants 18 years of age and above Period and duration 1 day Place of activity City Park in Mannheim, Germany Developed products Micro Compost System 85


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Activities & workshops / GERMANY

Activity description This 1-day workshop is based on a collaborative construction of a vertical micro garden using just a few discarded materials such as a plastic drum and channel base pipes. The micro garden is a constructed system containing compost. It can be stored at home, either inside or outside, and can serve as a base in which to grow plants. Through the addition of worms the garden can simultaneously compost your food waste and give a beautiful green and fresh touch to your surroundings. A micro garden can be easily constructed by almost anyone interested; no special skills are needed. Instead of using a big plastic drum, you can also set up a smaller version using an old plastic bucket. Everyone who has experience with gardening will be surprised by how fertile the soil will become and how quickly the plants will grow. Look at the videos and pictures to see how it works!

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Activities & workshops / GERMANY

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87


› GREECE -

T-shirt upcycling workshop

Activities & workshops / GREECE

Name of the activity T-shirt upcycling workshop

Name of the promoting organization: Action Synergy

Number of participants 10 Age of participants 15 – 35 years of age Period and duration 1-day event Place of activity Mosaik Support Center, Lesvos Island, Greece Developed products Aprons, coasters, hairbands and shopping bags 88


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Activities & workshops / GREECE

Activity description The t-shirt upcycling workshop was open for all to participate. One of the goals of the workshop was to share the knowledge of upcycling and show that it is easy and that anyone can do it. Since humans have become increasingly addicted to fashion and consumption, working with t-shirts as a basic material provides an easy medium through which to understand the upcycling process. It is also easy to get hold of the materials needed as almost everyone has a t-shirt they can let go of. Giving new life to that old t-shirt can be a fascinating process. On the invitation poster the participants were asked to bring one or more t-shirts they were no longer wearing. The tools needed, like scissors and sewing kits, were provided by the organisers. Some already finished products were displayed as examples and additional materials such as strings made out of t-shirts were available, ready to be used for weaving. Participants could choose to their own designs and rely on the assistance of the workshop coordinator throughout the process. The workshop was held at the outdoor space of the Mosaik Support Center in the capital of Lesvos Island, Mytilene. For many of the youngsters who attended this was the first time they had sewn or made string braids. While they all chose to make aprons with 89


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Activities & workshops / GREECE

their names on, others chose to make a variety of items including coasters, shopping bags, accessories and clothes hangers covered with fabric braids.

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Activities & workshops / GREECE

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› INDIA -

LF (Litter Free) Cushion Workshop

Name of the activity LF (Litter Free) Cushion Workshop

Activities & workshops / INDIA

Number of participants 56 people Age of participants 8 -15 years of age (13 participants), 15 - 30 years of age (28 participants) & 40 - 55 years of age (15 participants)

Developed products An upcycled PVC cushion case that can be filled with plastic packaging Name of the promoting organization Upcycling Studio Auroville

Period and duration December 2016 - April 2017 Place of activity Auroville, Tamil Nadu (India)

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› Activity description

Activities & workshops / INDIA

The Litter Free Cushion Workshop is designed to enable participants to learn about and implement change at the individual level of managing their own waste. The aim is to inspire individuals to understand that “change starts with me!” Post production (leftover) PVC materials from a tent manufacturer were used to make the cushion covers. The cushion cover acts as a receptacle for other single use plastics (i.e. plastic bags and packaging materials), which are used as stuffing to make a comfortable cushion. PVC (resin code #3) is one of the most toxic plastics for animals, our environment and us. This is why we decided to find a way to upcycle PVC and other plastic waste into something that would ensure these materials did not end up polluting the environment. This approach seeks to prolong the life of these waste materials in order to avoid harmful impacts to the environment and to animals. This is also a good intervention point to teach people about the impacts of toxic plastics (such as PVC) as well as the negative effects of single use plastics (disposable plastic bags and packaging) and the potential for upcycling to act as a possible solution once these waste materials have been produced.

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› The project comprised of 3 parts:

Activities & workshops / INDIA

1. Workshop on how to make the cushions: All participants designed two cushions from waste pieces of PVC sheet sourced from a tent manufacturer. The sheets were stitched into cushions. One was given to each participant and the second was donated to a public space as part of a wider awareness campaign on waste management. In total 80 cushions were created in this workshop. 2. Learning about what kinds of plastic waste we generate in our daily life: All of the participants filled their cushions with clean, soft plastic waste (‘premium waste’). Through this process, each person was encouraged to think about the different types of waste they generate. Such reflection generates awareness and inspires each individual to start thinking about how they can reduce the amount of waste they produce. Every cushion made and filled prevents 3-5 kilos of plastic waste from polluting our environment by ending up in an open dump, landfill or incinerator. 3. Change starts with me: Through the process of handling plastic waste and reflecting on the types and amounts of waste we generate in our daily lives, participants begin to understand how we can become change-makers and reduce our use and disposal of certain types of plastics. The ultimate aim at the individual level is to work towards avoiding plastics by refusing to buy and use them. 94


› Outcomes:

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Environmental benefit–by filling 80 cushions 400 kilos of plastic waste were diverted from landfill. Paradigm shift (waste is seen as a resource)–the manufacturing process for tents generates surplus waste of 10-15%. This waste is usually landfilled. Now the tent manufacturers see this waste as a resource. They plan to launch a new brand of bags that uses the excess material, thereby reducing waste by an estimated 5%. Premium waste–when waste is clean then it is a valuable material that can be used to make beautiful or useful things. In fact, the very concept of ‘waste’ as something useless that must be thrown away is a linear misperception about the nature of things. Increasing awareness–the workshop teaches participants about the plastic products we buy and use through the experiential learning experience of filling cushions with plastic waste that we have generated. Make personal waste management choices that are positive, reduce waste and favour a healthy environment. 95


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Final Assessment The project was successful as demonstrated by the enthusiasm and enjoyment of the participants and the high-quality and useful products that were made from waste. Plastic waste was used as a resource rather than left to become a pollutant. This project is easily replicable anywhere in the world where a manufacturing process is generating a surplus that conventionally becomes waste. The activity provides a simple and effective way to start at the grassroots level. Individuals can learn to manage their own waste and can be encouraged to understand and appreciate the need for larger community efforts/public events to save our environment from pollution.

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INDIA -

Tetra Pak Workshops

Name of the activity Tetra Pak Workshops Four workshops: Padum (June 2016), 6 participants, Production of Tetra Pak stools, Auroville (February 2017), 4 participants. Tetra Pak walls were produced, Bangalore (March 2017), 25 participants, Different Tetra Pak items (including an armchair), Auroville (April 2017), 9 participants, Production of Tetra Pak panels

Period and duration June 2016 - December 2017 Place of activity Auroville, Tamil Nadu & Padum, Zanskar (India) Developed products Stools, armchairs and interior walls Name of the promoting organization Upcycling Studio Auroville

Number of participants 44 Age of participants 10 - 74 years of age 98


› Activity description

Activities & workshops / INDIA

The Tetra Pak upcycling story began in 2010 during the Litter free Auroville (LFA) campaign in Auroville, South India. A group of young adults had the idea to create a campaign with the aim of promoting sustainable waste management and creating awareness on waste and its negative impacts. The event was a huge success with community members actively participating and showing great enthusiasm. A key question that arose from the campaign asked what can be done with Tetra Paks? They are difficult to recycle because they are composed of six different layers that include plastic, paper and aluminium. Because of the infrastrucutre needed to separate these layers and enable Tetra Paks to be recycled, upcycling represents one of the few viable alternatives to them ending up in landfills. The Upcycling Studio thus proposed the idea of using two Tetra Paks and placing one within the other to create a strong, lightweight brick filled with air. The first item produced by furniture designer Marc was a stool, rendered stronger and more durable through the addition of recycled papier mâché. Finding local solutions are one of the key approaches necessary to ensure the upcycling process is cost-effective, inclusive, collaborative and does not lead to adverse environmental impacts through waste transport. Another key to successful upcycling is the use of clean, 99


Activities & workshops / INDIA

or ‘premium’, waste. In Auroville, for example, local residents deposit their clean, dry and flattened Tetra Paks at a drop off point with their local cooperative. In so doing they become more conscious of the link between their own consumption and the waste they produce, and can involve themselves in becoming a part of the solution. Upcycling represents a paradigm shift in the way that we think about waste, design and the business of design. All of the Upcycling Studio designs are open source and not copyright. Indeed, the aim is actually to be copied so that more people will use waste, be inspired to upcycle and reduce the amount of waste that ends up in landfills around the world. The Upcycling Studio Auroville organises regular workshops, mainly with Indian students of architecture and product design. They have also made an online tutorial on how to build an armchair with Tetra Pak bricks. Over the last two years the Upcycling Studio Auroville have had more than 100 participants attending different workshops.

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The Auroville ‘Trashion Show’

Activities & workshops / INDIA

Name of the activity The Auroville ‘Trashion Show’ Number of participants 50 designers, 55 models and 1,000 spectators

Developed products 55 original and beautiful upcycled fashion garments and accessories made out of all types of waste including plastic, paper, metal and cloth.

Age of participants 4 - 74 years of age. Majority of the designers and models were youth (15 - 30 years of age)

Name of the promoting organization WasteLess, Upcycling Studio Auroville, Eco Service and Miraculous Productions

Period and duration December 2017 - February 23rd, 2018 Place of activity Auroville, Tamil Nadu (India)

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› Activity description

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The 2018 ‘Trashion Show’ was the 3rd in the event’s history where creative individuals become fashion designers and challenge themselves to upcycle different waste materials into beautiful and inspiring fashion garments and accessories. The theme for this year’s show was ‘Save the Sea’, a topic through which the organisers sought to raise awareness of the negative effects that human activities are having on our planet’s oceans. Plastic pollution is proving to be an environmental disaster for marine life. Not only do animals get injured and die when they become entangled in larger pieces of plastic (such as discarded fishing nets), but plastics also break down into tiny pieces called microplastics that wreak havoc throughout the food chain. Fish and other marine life often consume microplastics due to their similarity with more usual sources of food. Once ingested the plastic works its way up the food chain, damaging not only the animals but also harming us by making its way onto our plates. Many of the plastics found in the sea belong to the ‘single-use’ category, designed to be used just once and then thrown away. Takeaway coffee/tea cups, plates, straws, food packaging and plastic bags that are described as ‘disposable’ all risk being thrown away and ending up in the sea.

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› As humans we have the capability and the responsibility to work to save our oceans and environment by stopping, or at the very least reducing, our addiction to single use plastics. Using reusable bags instead of plastic carrier bags, refilling reusable water containers to avoid purchasing bottled water, and repairing, reusing and recycling wherever possible are all actions that we can do in our daily lives. In this spirit, 50 designers unleashed their creativity and the glamorous designs on display at the Trashion Show stitched together from single-use and other types of plastics. The exciting creativity on display and important message being conveyed at the Trashion Show can be seen in this film. An amazing diversity of upcycled fashion outfits and accessories were put on display at the Trashion Show. Some of these included: - Island of plastic - a vortex created from single-use shopping bags, PET bottles and mesh beneath a dazzling wrapping paper and party light garland. - A 50’s inspired A-line dress in bright yellow plastics, artfully decorated with roses made from plastic bags that previously contained pet food and a concertina paper headdress. - A dress made from VHS cassette tape and the toxic PVC plastic straps and synthetic rubber soles of flip-flops; products that are nearly impossible to recycle. Evoking the sea in a marine blue plastic cocktail dress with ocean-life detailing and 104


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Activities & workshops / INDIA

roses made from single-use plastics. A water bottle puff skirt and bottle cap bustier beneath a floral plastic cutlery fascinator. An amazing drinking straw and electronic protection foam pixie dress. Straws are among the top 10 items of plastic found in ocean debris. A PVC snowflake decoupage cascade made from tent factory waste, accessorised with a fish-shaped bag made from waste plastic.

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Activities & workshops / ITALY

ITALY -

Upcycling and beyond

Name of the activity Upcycling and beyond

Developed products n/a

Number of participants 10

Name of the promoting organization Centro di aggregazione giovanile Pozzuolo, LaREA Laboratorio Regionale di Educazione Ambientale

Age of participants 14 - 18 years of age Period and duration 3 hours Place of activity Centro di aggregazione giovanile, Pozzuolo, Udine

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› Activity description:

Activities & workshops / ITALY

This workshop was the first of three meetings attended by a group of teenagers who, during the following summer, would organise and run workshops for younger children on the theme of upcycling and waste reduction. Paolo Fedrigo, a member of the Regional Environmental Education Workshop, first gave a talk on the dramatic environmental situation in which we find ourselves due to unsustainable consumption models and a lack of environmental awareness and responsibility. Examples of complex systems existing in nature, which represent an optimal model of sustainability and of a circular economy were explained in the workshop. The first introductory theoretical phase was followed by a more practical session in which the students were able to experience the day-to-day applications of upcycling and waste reduction. Paolo showed examples of upcycling from the local rural culture in order to explain how the practice of upcycling is more of an attitude and a statement of intent rather than a fashion trend. Finally, additional upcycled products were discussed that offer examples of modern solutions to everyday problems that innovate well within the fields of design and energy.

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ITALY -

Upcycled mosaics

Name of the activity Upcycling and beyond

Developed products Mosaics

Number of participants 10

Name of the promoting organization Centro di aggregazione giovanile Pozzuolo, AmĂŠlie Guyonnet

Age of participants 14 - 18 years of age Period and duration 4 hours Place of activity Centro di aggregazione giovanile, Pozzuolo, Udine

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Activities & workshops / ITALY

Activity description This workshop was led by Amélie Guyonnet, a French mosaic artist with a preference for creative and contemporary design. At the beginning of the workshop, Amélie gave an introduction to the concept of texture and composition and presented the different materials that would be used to make small mosaics. After this introduction there was a short training session on how to build a dodecahedron with a bag of tobacco. This was followed by the core part of the workshop during which participants designed and constructed a small mosaic. Each participant was free to use different materials including electric cables, tiles, metal shavings, computer parts, pieces of wood, bottle caps, cans of cat food, etc. Using these resources the participants were able to develop a unique compositional and aesthetic approach while at the same time discovering a new appreciation for the value of items normally considered as waste.

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ITALY -

Learning from materials

Name of the activity Learning from materials

Developed products Furniture

Number of participants 10

Name of the promoting organization Centro di aggregazione giovanile Pozzuolo, Mohamed Chabarik

Age of participants 14 - 18 years of age Period and duration 4 hours Place of activity Centro di aggregazione giovanile, Pozzuolo, Udine

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Activity description This workshop was led by the Syrian artist Mohamed Chabarik for whom mosaic art represents a way of combining multiple artitstic interests and of telling stories about the world. The activities focused on the intimate meaning of items and materials, how every material can be reused and on how each material possesses mechanical and aesthetic aspects that can already suggest a specific reuse. For this workshop the material used was expanded PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride), a lightweight, rigid, expanded foam that is not easy to recycle or reuse. Production leftovers in the form of 3mm and 5mm sheets were sourced from a print shop in Udine for this workshop. The participants were divided into groups, each of which worked to develop a different project that studied the function of the object being created as well as the aesthetic form and the practical means of joining the parts. The resulting objects included a table, a stool and a lamp, as well as the development of a new consciousness on waste, design and upcycling.

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Activities & workshops / POLAND

POLAND -

“Śmieciosztuka” WASTEART

Name of the activity: Smieciosztuka” WASTEART

Developed products Recycled art products

Number of participants 15

Name of the promoting organization: Fundacja Laja

Age of participants 6 - 12 years of age Period and duration c. 2 hours Place of activity School

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Activities & workshops / POLAND

Activity description During the workshop the participants created their own designs using items that are allegedly useless and deemed as waste. A variety of items were created including plastic sculptures, paper cities or new toys. The participating children brought different types of waste to the workshop. They were then asked to think about the waste they produce throughout a normal day: what kind of materials is the waste they produce made from, if/ how is it segregated and what are the solutions to avoid creating this waste in the first place? Later they were introduced to the materials they brought with them by discussing how they could be segregated or how, instead of being disposed of, could it be used differently? The children were also introduced to the topic of creation – paper city, fish, flying animals, ground animals, totems etc. to provide examples of how to use the materials they brought with them in creative ways to make new objects. The participants were given complete freedom and 95% of the materials used are recycled. Above all, the most important contribution of the workshop was the outcome of education and the promotion of positive habits that the participants can gain during the workshop. The workshop therefore showed the participants that they are capable of creating beautiful and useful objects thanks to the creative and inventive use of items that we would normally throw away as household waste in our daily lives. 117


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On the way to Zero Waste - Homemade toothpaste

Activities & workshops / POLAND

Name of the activity On the way to Zero Waste - Homemade toothpaste Number of participants 15

Developed products Homemade toothpaste Name of the promoting organization Fundacja Laja

Age of participants 7 - 30 years of age Period and duration 1.5 hours Place of activity School

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Activities & workshops / POLAND

Activity description The aim of this activity was to make the participants aware of the waste problem around the world and in their own country while promoting a zero waste lifestyle as a solution to this global problem. In so doing, the toothpaste making activity seeks to inspire participants to avoid creating waste within their households. Participants were asked to bring their own jars. First of all, we talked about the waste situation in our country: How much waste is produced per capita/year? What is the lifespan of the waste we all produce? We asked the participants what they felt the solutions to these issues could be? We also talked about the benefits of cooking and processing food ourselves and about the things that one can do at home, or in one’s day-to-day life by, for example, bringing reusable bags when shopping, etc. Afterwards, we led the participants through the process of making the toothpaste as follows: Dissolve the coconut oil in a glass bowl. Grind the Xylitol until you have a soft powder. Mix all the dry ingredients together. Add the herbal infusion and stir with a wooden or porcelain spoon. Next, add the coconut oil and the essential oils. 120


› Keep stirring until the paste has a smooth consistency (it will take a little time), then transfer the liquid into jars. (Remember: use only glass or porcelain dishes - clay does not like metal containers or utensils).

Activities & workshops / POLAND

Finally, participants put their toothpaste in the jars they had brought and created their own attractive labels. Here are the materials we needed: For the toothpaste: 500g Kaolin clay, 150g Xylitol, 50g Diatomaceous Earth, 20-30ml essential oils - mint, sage, cloves, 15g Himalayan salt, 200ml herbal infusion, 50ml coconut oil, glass or plastic bowls (do not use the metal ones there will be chemical reaction with the clay and you surely do not want it!), wooden or ceramic spoons, bowl with hot water, scales. For the labels: Self-adhesive paper and permanent markers.

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Activities & workshops / ROMANIA

ROMANIA -

WunderDesign - Responsible Design and Production

Name of the activity WunderDesign - Responsible Design and Production

Developed products 10 upcycled products that became the focus of an exhibition

Number of participants 10 participants on a 9-day intensive course

Name of the promoting organization D’Avent Association

Age of participants 20 - 35 years of age Period and duration 1st - 9th July, 2017 Place of activity Bucharest, Romania

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› Activity description

Activities & workshops / ROMANIA

The Wunderdesign - Responsible Design and Production course used mainly upcycled or environment-friendly materials. It was addressed to craftsmen and young designers wanting to practice their creativity and turn their passion into a profession, the value of which would be appreciated on the commercial market. Traditionally, the designer is the one who designs a product, while the craftsman is the one who runs it without the need for design. Things happen differently nowadays. People with different professions (designers, architects, economists, doctors, etc.), but with a passion for craftsmanship, become craftsmen. Like all skills, creativity is learned and, above all, it is practiced. That is why we launched Wunderdesign, a course about passion and creativity, but also about the skills that we can use by learning from one another. Ten people were selected for the course and received training for nine days. This process culminated with the ten new upcycled products that were produced by the participants becoming the focus of an exhibition. A responsible design guide was also developed to share the principles conveyed within the course to a wider audience. 123


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SOUTH AFRICA -

Seeding Futures Program

Name of the activity Seeding Futures Program Number of participants 22 Age of participants 18 - 50 years of age

Developed products Accredited Applied Permaculture Training certificate Name of the promoting organization SEED

Period and duration 6 Months Place of activity SEED’s Rocklands Urban Abundance Centre

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Activity description Seeding Futures is a six-month accredited education and work skills program that wakes up the potential in unemployed Cape Flats youth by fostering personal resilience and green work opportunities. The Program outline: Accredited Permaculture Training (APT): The first part of the program is an intensive 3-week workshop that is a recognised SETA Qualification and internationally recognised Permaculture Design Certificate. Once the participants have completed the module they can go on to complete a 5-month internship that seeks to deepen the skills acquired, provide hands-on experience and enable hours on the ground at SEED’s Rocklands Abundance Centre and other partner sites. The internship modules include: Personal Resilience In this module we develop an understanding of self knowledge and awareness. We complete sessions on strength analysis and feedback, therapeutic art process and healthy cooking, combined 126


Activities & workshops / SOUTH AFRICA

› with multiple wellness practices. Household Resilience We look at the house as an ecosystem and apply homesteading designs and implementation, working towards creating climate resilience at the household level. Case studies and examples have been created and developed over the years that serve as a basis for discussion. Neighbourhood Resilience Here we look at developing sustainable communities by introducing concepts and practices appropriate to the site and region. We guide participants through a mapping and design process to create prototypes that work towards creating neighbourhoods that are climate resilient and low impact. Organic Production Within Organic Production the participants learn about different models of production and are exposed to examples of compost production, waste management and seed saving. Enterprise Development Including units of study entitled: Entrepreneurship, Ideation, Business Models, Customer Profiling, Prototyping, Storytelling, Branding and Pitching. Work Placement Towards the end of the internship we connect our participants with different social and green enterprises and networks that could provide them with employment opportunities following graduation. Participants also expand the Seed Enterprises in Mitchells Plain, South Africa. 127


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SOUTH AFRICA -

Introduction to Recycling and Upcycling

Name of the activity Introduction to Recycling and Upcycling Number of participants 8 Age of participants 18 - 30 years of age

Developed products A variety of upcycled products were created by participants during the workshop Name of the promoting organization SEED

Period and duration 1 day Place of activity SEED’s Rocklands Urban Abundance Centre

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Activity description Local unemployed youth were invited to attend our ‘Introduction to Recycling and Upcycling’ workshop. We had previously observed the huge disconnect that the youth in the area have with the waste they generate and waste more generally in their community. The workshop was held in an outdoor classroom made from waste materials including tyres, cans, bottles and repurposed materials. For the workshop itself we collected waste items and also asked participants to bring their own. The day began with an introduction to our project ‘StartUpcycling’. The collected waste items were then scattered around the classroom in order to give a visual representation of the state of the planet. This setting provided a great tool for the demonstration of waste separation and the different categories within it. One of the goals for the day was to find a purpose for each of the waste items that had been collected. As we went along and touched on different topics, we sorted and created stations for recycling, reuse, non-biodegradable, upcycling and green waste. Examples of upcycled creations were on display for inspiration. These were made out of various waste resources and included bowls made of vinyl records, hats and bags made of plastic packets and bags made from pantyhose and jewellery. These displays set the tone for the day. 130


› We touched on the following topics during the course of the workshop:

Activities & workshops / SOUTH AFRICA

- Introduction to Recycling: What is waste and how do we define it? The reality of the impact of waste on the environment (facts and statistics were provided). Why it is important to recycle. 3’rs – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Changing our consumer habits. Where is your waste going? The state of our landfills. Different categories of waste. Recycling symbols and what they mean. Plastic symbols and what they mean. Recycling – understanding the cycle. Waste management and the various employment opportunities it provides. Waste pickers and their role in society.

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- What is the difference between the terms recycling and upcycling? Introduction to Upcycling: Trash is cash. Why we should upcycle. The value of waste and changing your perception. Tapping into your creativity (we had an upcycling session with waste generated). Entrepreneurship. The day was fun-filled with lots of learning and sharing. Everyone felt inspired and the creative sessions felt somewhat therapeutic. There was no predefined product that participants were expected to make and we allowed everyone to be creatively free in upcycling the waste that had been collected. Items that were made on the day included bird feeders, jewellery, a seat, a plant holder, decorative creations and cool life hacks. Some of the participants swapped and purchased each other’s creations at the end of the workshop. The workshop also included a demonstration on how to build a seat from 2 litre plastic bottles. At the end of the day we had a demonstration on how to set up a worm farm to divert green waste from landfills and talked about composting more generally. The workshop was impactful and raised awareness about waste and the considerable destruction that it causes but also the potential value that it holds. 132


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SOUTH AFRICA -

Earth Building Course

Name of the activity Earth Building Course

Developed products Earth Building Course certificate

Number of participants -

Name of the promoting organization Urban Resilience Initiative

Age of participants 18 – 65 years of age Period and duration 10-day workshop, 6-month internship Place of activity Berg en dal Permaculture Farm, Klein Karoo, South Africa

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Activities & workshops / SOUTH AFRICA

Activity description The Urban Resilience Initiative participants attended a 10-day Earth Building Course in South Africa’s semi-desert region, the Klein Karoo, hosted and facilitated by The Berg en Dal community. The course explored sustainable building in a variety of contexts, the value and practice of building with natural materials and the environmental and social benefits of earth building.. The approach to training adopted by the course is rooted in participatory learning practice and thus drew upon the collective knowledge of the group, while simultaneously guiding the course to achieve its specified outcomes. By working with a range of materials on small projects that people can take home and implement themselves we enable participants to immediately shift their practice towards sustainability. The workshop covers: Permaculture design and site selection Building layout Landscaping to protect buildings Integration of the building into the environment Soil testing and materials selection Foundations 135


Activities & workshops / SOUTH AFRICA

› Walls Openings – windows and doors Roofs Fastenings Plasters and paints A short building design challenge This course provides participants with the basic understanding and skills necessary to: Assess a site for the appropriate application of natural and sustainable building. Decide on appropriate natural material(s) to ensure a lower carbon footprint of a building. Apply basic design and layout for the building to produce, capture and store available renewable energy. Test local materials for their suitability in a natural building. Assemble and combine a variety of natural materials into a building.

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Startupcycling intro /

4

VOICES

In this chapter we hear the voices of some of the upcycling enthusiasts that we met and found inspiring throughout the project. The different views and perspectives given highlight the multitude of opportunities that upcycling can offer. 138


Startupcycling intro /

“Upcycling is the creative exclamation mark that has the power to focus people on the issue of waste and get them to act.”

Alina, Bucharest 139


Startupcycling intro /

“Upcycling makes efficient use of “waste” in a creative and ecological way and teaches others to do the same.”

B, Auroville 140


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› “Through utilizing our inherent creativity we are able to provide design solutions for local spaces. We use readily available resources (once seen as waste) to yield productive human ecosystems.”

Calvin, Cape Town 141


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“The power of upcycling lies in adding value to a waste item that reached the end of its lifecycle as we know it (in a linear system). The superpower of upcycling is the limitless possibilities through which we can transform waste into new products.”

Patricia, Trento 142


Startupcycling intro /

“The power of upcycling is in provoking thought. When you upcycle, it’s more of an art thing. As an artist you create something very beautiful and unique from trash. But many will do nothing more than put trash together with glue. “ Herve, Auroville 143


Startupcycling intro /

› “Upcycling is a concept of life. People who work with upcycling see life and the world around them in another way. This new consciousness about waste is capable of improving the world through the change it causes in each person.”

Inah, Rio de Janeiro 144


Startupcycling intro /

› “The power of upcycling is that it modifies your perception of whatever is discarded and useless. As such it’s symbolic. It isn’t an end in itself. It’s a creative statement of an interim ecology when the climax would be zero waste.” Johnny, Auroville 145


Startupcycling intro /

“I’m a furniture designer and upcycling represents the ultimate way to practice design. You start from matter (waste) and then develop the idea. This is not the usual way to practice design…. A true upcycler – wants and needs to be copied because the ultimate goal is to reduce waste!” Marc, Auroville 146


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› “It teaches us to understand waste as a resource and it also teaches us that we cannot upcycle everything we produce and therefore we should turn our way of thinking from consumption to reduction and avoidance.”

Mariola, Cieszyn 147


Startupcycling intro /

“I appreciate things that are unique. I get drawn to beauty. I have always loved the concept of transformation in alchemy. Upcycling has all these three qualities.”

Ok, Auroville 148


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› “Upcycling helps people to look at waste with a different eye, giving it a new life, and keeping it out of landfill. It also makes people more aware of their buying habits. It teaches us how to sustain ourselves through turning trash into cash.” Roze, Cape Town 149


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“The power of upcycling is transformation. It has the power to transform waste, people and the Earth.”

Tania, Cape Town 150


Startupcycling intro /

“We want to be part of the solution and not part of the problem.”

KUNST-STOFFE – Zentralstelle für wiederverwendbare Materialien, Berlin 151


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Startupcycling intro /

5

TOOLS FOR UPCYCLING

This concluding chapter delves into the types of activities and theories behind upcycling as a tool for youth engagement with green entrepreneurship and waste reduction. Finding ways of turning our global waste problem into a sustainable and economically viable business is the goal behind the StartUpcycling project and this eBook. We therefore finish by outlining some useful steps that can help you to become a green entrepreneur through upcycling. 152


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5.1 Introduction

Tools for Upcycling / 5.1 Introduction

In this chapter we present some educational tools and methods to help young enthusiasts to realise their entrepreneurial potential and get their green ideas off the ground. Raising awareness of the consequences of the waste produced by societies worldwide is of paramount importance to ensuring a sustainable future. Working with young people presents a valuable opportunity through which to increase such awareness, change mindsets and highlight the importance of effectively addressing the issue of waste. The more we understand about the impact that ignorant and wasteful living is having on our planet, the more we realise the necessity of bringing about change. This intrinsic motivation to drive change plays a central role in starting a new business. It requires a lot of patience and perseverance that needs to be communicated effectively from the outset.

In the StartUpcycling project, we follow the principles of social and green entrepreneurship rather than those of conventional entrepreneurship. This means that an upcycling entrepreneur would place emphasis on creating ‘better’ products rather than focusing solely on creating ‘more’. A Social Green Enterprise will of course also strive to make a profit but through actions intended to promote, regenerate or sustain the wellbeing of society and the natural environment. This is commonly referred to as a triple bottom line; managing a business or enterprise according to social, environmental AND economic criteria.

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Fig. - Triple Bottom Line, source: CC-by- 3.0 Triplebotline 155


Tools for Upcycling / Introduction

› The tools that are discussed in this chapter should not be taken as a comprehensive or exhaustive list for planning a Social Green Enterprise. However, they provide a general overview for designing entrepreneurial ideas, or any other kind of project, for people who have no prior experience of entrepreneurship or management but have an idea they would like to develop.

this chapter we present one best practice example to render some of these theories more concrete. If you want to find out more about the definitions and principles of green enterprises, as well as further lessons relating to starting an upcycling business, you can visit our eCourse.

We go through the process of business development by first focusing on Idea Generation. The identification of a clear Vision and Mission is a useful step to clarify the business goals. So too is the definition of a Value Proposition. We next dive into the methodology of Business Modelling which can be helpful for beginners and experts alike. Networking is one of the most powerful tools in the world of upcycling, a fact that encouraged us to introduce the online mapping tool from our eCourse that can provide a source of contacts. At the end of 156


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Tools for Upcycling / 5.2 Talking about Green Enterprises

5.2 Talking about green enterprises

Before we start brainstorming ideas for our future businesses, it is important to clarify some distinctions between different types of entrepreneurial activities and their goals. More specifically, it is important to note the important differences between the more typical commercial entrepreneurship and green entrepreneurship. Commercial entrepreneurship is mostly oriented towards generating profit. The goal of this type of business is the production of goods or services in order to generate higher revenue that is usually reinvested in the business or distributed between shareholders. However, in any entrepreneurial activity, every entrepreneur should aim to offer products and services of a higher quality than their competitors and care about their employees by providing remuneration and favourable working conditions. The main goal of such a business is the focus on generating financial resources. Green entrepreneurship as part of Social

entrepreneurship is a business model that follows similar principles to commercial entrepreneurship but with a focus on providing a solution to an environmental issue such as climate change, loss of rainforests and biodiversity or water pollution. In other words, green entrepreneurship is a type of activity where the business model serves as an instrument to solve an environmental problem. The most important aspect is therefore not generating products of higher value but generating a solution to the problem. The philosophy behind green entrepreneurship is that profit is not the final goal of the business activity but acts as a means to achieve the final goal of making our world a better place. To understand the differences between Commercial Enterprises and Social Green Enterprises, we can consider the example of the different processes behind the production of an industrial (non-organic, mass market) egg and an organic egg.

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Fig. 1 - Circular Economy model, source: European Parliament The circular economy infographic above illustrates the pathway of a commercial product. You can use the information contained within the infographic to identify the processes behind the production of an organic egg compared to the industrial alternative. Fill in the gaps in the table on page ? to identify how the organic process contrasts with the traditional industrial model. 158


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› PHASE

QUESTION

INDUSTRIAL EGG

ORGANIC EGG

(conventional business)

(social business)

DESIGN

What is the purpose of the conventional/ social business?

Large production of eggs to be distributed to an extensive territory with a high profit margin

PRODUCTION

What inputs are required to produce an industrial/ organic egg?

Large closed spaces, crowded chickens, processed food, high production/ chicken

DISTRIBUTION

What is the road from production to consumption?

Transportation over long distances, a large network of distributors and often plastic packaging to protect the eggs throughout the extensive transportation requirements

CONSUMPTION

What selling points are emphasized?

Lower price, standard size, attractive packaging

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› PHASE

QUESTION

INDUSTRIAL EGG

ORGANIC EGG

(conventional business)

(social business)

COLLECTING/ RECYCLING

What waste it generates?

Often plastic packaging, food chemicals that can damage soil and watercourses

IMPACT

How does it contribute to the community? How does it treat animals?

Large production of eggs at low prices that are distributed on large territories. Focus on production rather than on the livelihood of the chickens or on the nutritious qualities of the egg, use of drugs that can impact the quality of the egg and, ultimately, human health.

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Tools for Upcycling / 5.3 Idea Generation

5.3 Idea generation

Every business starts with an idea. Every successful business idea focuses on offering either a solution to some social or environmental issue or the satisfaction of customer needs. A great tool to help frame an initial idea is problem tree analysis.

That is why our task is to: Focus on a key issue that is relevant to society or to a group of people who would be your potential clients. Identify such a problem and note it down at the top of a sheet of flipchart paper;

1

Task: Problem Tree Analysis Problem tree analysis is generally used to identify the negative aspects of an existing situation and establish the cause-effect relationship between (root causes of) the problems identified.

2

Once you have defined the key problem, try to think of at least three root causes. Write them below the key problem on your flipchart paper and connect them with arrows (as shown in the example below);

3

Think of some more specific problems that lead to the causes you defined in the 2nd stage. Try to find at least 3 for each and write them below the 2nd line before connecting them with arrows (as shown in the example below).

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Tools for Upcycling / 5.4 Vision and Mission

5.4 Vision and mission

Vision statements and mission statements are complementary to one another and together they are the core of any business, organisation or project. Nonetheless, they have different purposes. While the mission statement describes the current situation of a business and what it is doing now, the vision statement sets up a future scenario of where the business wants to be. Elements of both mission and vision statements are often combined to provide a statement of the company’s purposes, goals and values.

idea can offer a wider solution, be it in the arena of waste reduction or any other social or environmental problem. In this regard, it is helpful to think of the future and imagine what kind of company you want to be, or what you would like your surrounding environment to be like, in 10, 20 or even 30 years time.

What is a vision? Any type of activity has an aim and purpose. If you think about a business idea from a green enterprise standpoint, the final aim should not only be that of generating profit. If you think only about money, your business and its products will not have any added value for potential customers. Instead, it is useful to think about how you your business

“Toyota will lead the way to the future of mobility, enriching lives around the world with the safest and most responsible ways of moving people.” (Toyota)

Examples of some vision statements: “There will be a personal computer on every desk running Microsoft software” (Bill Gates).

“To be Earth’s most customer-centric company, where customers can find and discover anything they might want to buy online” (Amazon Inc.) 163


Tools for Upcycling / 5.4 Vision and Mission

› Vision statements answer the questions of WHERE you want to be and WHAT achieving your final goal will look like. It should be long-term oriented; once you achieve your vision there is no reason for your business to exist! Therefore, you need to formulate your vision clearly from the outset and not make any serious changes.

Task: Defining your vision statement To make your vision statement effective, try to describe a clear and bright future. Make your goals achievable and ensure that the statement is memorable for a wide audience. Be sure to include the values and culture of your business.

You can expand on your vision by writing detailed answers to the following questions: Who does your business help? What is the purpose of your business? How do you want to make the world a better place with your business? What problems does your business solve? What is the ultimate aim of your business? At this stage you will have collated a tonne of information. Work through everything you have collected, and discard any information/ideas that are not absolutely core to your business. Remember that anything you discard can still be used to form your business plan. After you have finished this step, you will have an outline for your vision statement.

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Tools for Upcycling / 5.4 Vision and Mission

Tips: Use short words and sentences to keep the statement engaging. Limit yourself to concrete ideas and simple language. Focus on what your business does for others - how you will help your customers and inspire your employees. Ask people for feedback and see how they react to your vision statement – was it easy to understand or is it too complicated?

Who will benefit from this? Why do you do that? Here are a few examples of mission statements:

“We want to engage in sustainable business while making fair and environmentally-friendly products for our customers.” (Vaude) “Our mission is to offer upcycled alternatives to traditional home decor, jewelry and fashion as a way to reduce global waste.” (Hipcycle)

What is a mission? While the vision statement points to your future perspective, the mission statement describes the steps “Heal the environment through creative reuse and you will take to reach your vision. In other words, raise awareness about upcycling raw materials and your mission answers the questions: repurposing usable goods.” (Remainders) What do you do today? For whom do you do it? 165


Tools for Upcycling / 5.4 Vision and Mission

Task: Defining your mission statement To formulate an effective mission statement, describe the purpose of your company. This will include the kind of business are you undertaking, the type of products or services you will offer to the market and the people you envisage becoming your clients. With your vision statement to hand, ask yourself, “what must I do to make this happen?” Mission statements tend to be customer-focused, so another way of asking the question is, “what must I do for my customers to make this vision become a reality?” It is useful to write your mission statement down and ask the others for feedback.

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Tools for Upcycling / 5.5 Value Proposition

5.5 Value proposition

In order to make your business successful from the very start, you should be clear about who your clients are, why they would buy your product and why you are providing a better product than your competitors. Since consumers buy not just goods, but values, your potential client must be informed of the kind of values you are offering. Value proposition is therefore a promise of value that will be delivered to your client. Upcycling products are linked to a lot of values your products can carry. These could include, for example, ‘sustainability’, ‘caring for the Earth’ or ‘animal protection’. The more clearly you communicate these values, the more people you will reach. The following exercise helps to identify the values a business may represent.

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Tools for Upcycling / 5.5 Value Proposition

Values can include:

Accountability/Accuracy/Achievement/Adventurousness/Altruism/Ambition/ Assertiveness/Balance/Being the best/Belonging/Boldness/Calmness/Carefulness/ Challenge/Cheerfulness/Clear-mindedness/Commitment/Community/Compassion/ Competitiveness/Consistency/Contentment/Continuous Improvement/Contribution/ Control/Cooperation/Correctness/Courtesy/Creativity/Curiosity/Decisiveness/ Democracyticness/Dependability/Determination/Excellence/Excitement/Expertise/ Exploration/Expressiveness/Fairness/Faith/Family-orientededness/Fidelity/Fitness/ Fluency/Focus/Freedom/Fun/Generosity/Goodness/Grace/Growth/Happiness/ Hard Work/Health/Helping Society/Holiness/Honesty/Honour/Humility/ Independence/Ingenuity/Inner Harmony/Inquisitiveness/Insightfulness/Intelligence/ Intellectual Status/Intuition/Perfection/Piety/Positivity/Practicality/Preparedness/ Professionalism/Prudence/Quality-orientation/Reliability/Resourcefulness/Restraint/ Results-oriented/Rigor/Security/Self-actualization/Self-control/Selflessness/Selfreliance/Sensitivity/Serenity/Service/Shrewdness/Simplicity/Soundness/Speed/ Spontaneity/Stability/Strategic/Strength/Structure/Success/Support/Teamwork/ Temperance/Diversity/Dynamism/Economy/Effectiveness/Efficiency/Elegance/ Empathy/Enjoyment/Enthusiasm/Equality/Love/Loyalty/Making a difference/ Mastery/Merit/Obedience/Openness/Order/Originality/Patriotism/Tolerance/ Traditionalism/Trustworthiness/Truth-seeking/Understanding/Uniqueness/Unity/ Usefulness/Vision/Vitality/Devoutness/Diligence/Discipline/Discretion/Joy/Justice/ Leadership/Legacy/Thankfulness/Thoroughness/Thoughtfulness/Timeliness 168


Tools for Upcycling / 5.5 Value Proposition

Task: Sun of Values Enter your important personal and professional values at the end of the rays of sun on the following template. Take some time to think about these values. When you have placed your values in the rays of sun, choose five that are the most important to you and make sure that these are linked to the activity/ business idea you have planned. Ask yourself which of these values are particularly important to you in the context of your work environment? For example: 1 – 5 with 1 being the most important but what about the other 4?

2. Freedom to discover new things (A value that motivated you to think about starting your planned activity or your own business) 3. Friendship (A value easily incorporated into your business idea, as you want to realize it with your friends) Independence (You know that you really want to start slowly in the morning) 5. Reliability (An important value that you still want to work on. You also want others to live it)

Example of such a hierarchy: 1. Family-oriented (a “super value” for you that needs to be considered regardless of the activity or business planned) 169


Tools for Upcycling / 5.5 Value Proposition

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170


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Tools for Upcycling / 5.6 Business Modelling

5.6 Business modelling

Once you have identified your customers and have an idea of your vision and mission, you can draw a picture of what your business will look like. The Business Model Canvas is a strategic management template for developing business models with organisational components and activities that create and capture value. It contains nine basic building blocks that explain the fundamentals of your business. The Business Model Canvas is widely used by beginners as well as experienced players in business and management. The value proposition and the customers form the basis of the model.

Task: The Business Model Canvas

for designing the process and resources needed to create value for the customer. The exercise can be done in small groups of four or individually depending on the group size you are working with. We recommend working in groups or at least in pairs to help make the brainstorming and development of ideas more fun and effective. Once the participants have been organised into groups, you can distribute the Canvas template (preferably on A3 paper). Alternatively, you can save paper by providing the participants with a link to the digital version (https://canvanizer.com/ choose-canvas). Give the groups some time to let them have a look at the segments on the template.

The following exercise is based on the “Business Model Generation� by Alexander Osterwalder & Yves Pigneur and provides us with a useful tool 171


Tools for Upcycling / 5.6 Business Modelling

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Fig. - Business Model Canvas, source: CC-BY-SA-1.0, DLougheed 172


› 4. Customer Relationships: identify different types of relationships that you would like to establish with your customers, or the relationships your clients would expect The template consists of nine main parts that need to you to establish (5 min). be filled in. The Business Model Canvas should be 5. Revenue Streams: list the ways you will generate completed in a specific order. Your task is to follow profit/cash for your business (how and what the the correct order and brainstorm the questions posed customer will pay for) (5 min). in each block. These will help to lead to the idea 6. Key Resources: list all the necessary resources generation. (human, material, know-how) you need to make the business model work for you (5 min). 7. Key Activities: list the most important things your 1. Customer Segments: indicate your target customer(s) company must undertake to create value (what are you – groups of people or organisations you want to reach going to do in your business) (5 min). and satisfy with your product/service (5 min). 8. Key Partners: mention the main partners and 2. Value Proposition: indicate the specific value that suppliers who are key elements required for your your products or services create for your customer (5 business model to work; identify which important min). activities they each perform (5 min). 3. Channels: list different ways in which your company 9. Cost Structure: describe all kinds of expenses will communicate with customers and raise awareness for your business and rank them according to their about your products and services (5 min). financial consumption (5 min).

Tools for Upcycling / 5.6 Business Modelling

Once the groups have had time to look at the template, guide them through the following steps:

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Tools for Upcycling / 5.6 Business Modelling

› After having completed the Canvas, the templates produced by the groups can be displayed on the walls of the room. Additionally, you could also organise an elevator pitch where each team presents their business model in a 3-minute presentation and gets feedback from the other participants. They should clearly point out the waste materials they will use and the values they want to promote as a green business. To explain the various aspects discussed thus far more clearly, we will present the business model by Wunderkraft, an upcycling business based in Romania, as a best practice example in the section titled ‘Best Practice’ below.

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5.7 Networking

Tools for Upcycling / 5.7 Networking

We encourage young green entrepreneurs to undertake research within their surroundings in order to connect with other entrepreneurs and find supporters and networks. The following exercise is also useful to let participants reflect on their local surroundings. The online mapping project developed by StartUpcycling (accessible through our eCourse) offers a useful resource for all kinds of sustainable enterprises and initiatives in the field of upcycling. It is open source and can be used for all sorts of sustainable mapping purposes. You can easily make new entries, leave comments and adjust past entries. The more hashtags like #upcycling or #startupcycling you leave, the easier it is to connect with others. The ‘mapping for good’ tool is made for people like us to be more visible as upcyclers as well as to explore new places and people. 175


› Task: Online Mapping

Does the map show an upcycling startup in your region? Do you know of an enterprise or initiative that you would like to add?

Tools for Upcycling / 5.7 Networking

In order to link the online mapping exercise to the entrepreneurial ideas discussed in this chapter, you can ask the following questions (directly or for discussion in small groups):

Afterwards, the participants can think about the process of founding and developing their startup: How would this enterprise make profit to sustain the people who are solving problems for the community? How does this enterprise have an impact while making profit?

How do people you know generate an income and what do they generate income for? How do they spend their income? Which enterprises make the biggest profits in your region? Which NGOs and other organisations work in your region in order to solve social and ecological problems? Do you know people engaging in social projects in their free time while working in other jobs? After having introduced the online map and its functions, you can continue with these questions:

The exercise can be connected with excursions, interviews or even treasure hunts using the online map. It encourages direct interaction between young people and experienced entrepreneurs that could even result in mentoring or jobshadowing opportunities. Our aim is to keep populating the map with

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Tools for Upcycling / 5.7 Networking

additional hashtags such as #internship in order to create a platform that facilitates connecting and networking between those searching for assistance with developing an idea and those in need of opportunities.

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Tools for Upcycling / 5.8 Best Practice Example

5.8 Best practice example

Entrepreneurial inspirations There are many great upcyclers in the world. Most of the time, however, it is challenging for them to establish a sustainable business as their income is very dependent on the presence of a market through which to sell their goods. Unfortunately most markets will be made up of people who may have never heard of upcycling, nor of the importance it plays in waste reduction. It is therefore much more complicated and difficult to find a way to make these businesses accessible and attractive to customers.

To help you get a clearer idea of what constitutes a successful upcycling business, we provide you with three different examples that exemplify the diversity of upcycling business models out there: When considering some best-practice models, we would like to introduce you to the enterprise ‘Wunderkraft’. The team participated in some of our activities and meetings and proved that they are a very professional, successful and green upcycling business.

1

With our StartUpcycling project, we want to emphasise that anyone can start to upcycle. Ecodesigners, educators, promoters and awareness raisers are all trying to show this in various ways worldwide. They are involved both with distribution and awareness, making it easier for anyone to learn something new and eco-friendly.

Wunderkraft is a Romanian support platform for the community of artisans and social enterprises active in upcycling. Their mission is to promote responsible production and consumption while supporting green entrepreneurship among artisans and makers in order to produce eco-design objects. Alina Blaga, one of the managers, joined

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Tools for Upcycling / 5.8 Best Practice Example

› StartUpcycling to share her expertise and to learn from the other upcyclers worldwide. She introduced us to the high quality products they create in the network of ‘Wunderkraft’. You can browse through their Canvas Business Model to find out more: Click here!

knowledge in the field of waste reduction. Thanks to their extensive network in the multicultural town, they can participate in various events and create upcycling products for these purposes.

They do not want to expand their business nor send their products overseas in order to avoid the CO2 WasteLess, a StartUpcycling partner organisation, emissions associated with transportation. Their local introduced us to Marc and OK, two designers online platform offered to set them up with an online working on Upcycling in a studio based in the shop for their products. As they do not currently multicultural city of Auroville (South India). They are have the capacity to invest in marketing, this form of enthusiastic about reusing materials and creating the dissemination and public relation is a big support. most amazing sculptures, furniture or anything you could imagine. Thanks to the alternative economic and communitybased model of the town of Auroville, they During this project over the past two years, they experience financial and social support. Upcycling worked on their focus and business models of Studio Auroville is a great example to demonstrate their upcycling studio. They decided to place more that sales, marketing and networking can all be emphasis on education and began teaching students done locally and through the support of a local and volunteers to equip them with design skills and community.

2

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Tools for Upcycling / 5.8 Best Practice Example

› Kunst-Stoffe – Central Department for Reusable Materials e.V. is a non-profit organisation based in Berlin. The goal of Kunst-Stoffe is to collect and store Berlin’s residual waste to then resell it to interested parties. The supposed ‘waste’ materials are unused or rarely used and in good shape. They are donated by hardware stores, workmen, organisations, expositions and private people and stored in a big house. Artists, educational institutions people interested in DIY and people interested in the organisation more generally come and buy the materials for a fraction of their original price.

3

If you are interested you can find examples of other best practice models in Chapter 2 of our eCourse. Browse through the many examples of businesses and organisations from Brazil, India, South Africa, Greece, Romania, Poland, Italy and Germany.

The business model is not for profit but shows that trash is cash! —-

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Tools for Upcycling / Introduction

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Want to find out what happens next? Follow us on Facebook and visit our blog on the website to stay tuned. If you’ve enjoyed this book and like our project, would you consider rating it on Facebook? We are looking forward to your feedback. We are eager to further connect with people from all over the world who share the same interest and passion to empower youth and refuse waste at the same time. Contact us and join our network! startupcycling@gmail.com 181


โ€บ IMPRINT The provider of this booklet is Starkmacher e.V.: Starkmacher e.V. Coblitzallee 8 68163 Mannheim Germany Tel: +49 (0) 621 4960 2693 Fax: +49 (0) 621 4960 2694

Content and Editing: Ribhu Vohra, Teresa Wald, Mukta Martens and partners. Design: Matteo Carli and Elena Guglielmotti Liability note: The information provided in this eBook is constituted with great diligence. All information, expressed or implied, is given without legal liability.

E-Mail: info(at)starkmacher.eu Internet: www.starkmacher.eu Legally liable: Chairman: Mathias Kaps Vice chairmen: Christian Rรถser and Johannes Epping

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› Legal note: If the eBook contains links or references of providers other than the Starkmacher association, then any of the other provider’s propositions are not covered by the herein enclosed company-specific information and references. Without our expressed written permission, it is prohibited to redistribute or reproduce in any way parts of the contents. Furthermore, the rights for reproduction in any form, especially for print, electronic and other media remain reserved. The project “StartUpcycling” is realized with the financial support of the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union.

“StartUpcycling” is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Share Alike 4.0 International License

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Profile for StartUpcycling

eBook "StartUpcycling"  

The eBook provides a summary of the educational content developed by the international youth project "StartUpcycling" and provides assistanc...

eBook "StartUpcycling"  

The eBook provides a summary of the educational content developed by the international youth project "StartUpcycling" and provides assistanc...

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