Bundaberg recyclers clean up at Change Maker Awards

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change maker awards
Paul and Anne Marie English (middle) with Minister for the Environment and the Great Barrier Reef, Ms Leeanne Enoch and CEO of Container Exchange Ken Noye.

Two Bundaberg businesses from Queensland’s Containers for Change scheme have been recognised at the inaugural Change Maker Awards in Brisbane recently.

Bundaberg Container Refund Point operators Arcon Bottles and Cans and Impact Community Services were both recognised with award wins at the event.

Container Refund Point operators, logistics providers and processors who were a part of the scheme were invited to nominate for the awards across the categories of Safety, Sustainability, Innovation, Customer Focus and Community Engagement.

Minister for the Environment and the Great Barrier Reef, Ms Leeanne Enoch and CEO of Container Exchange Ken Noye with an Impact representative.
Minister for the Environment and the Great Barrier Reef, Ms Leeanne Enoch and CEO of Container Exchange Ken Noye with Viorel Crisan accepting the award on behalf of Impact.

Nathan Spruce from Impact Community Services said the organisation’s involvement in the scheme enabled them to expand their offering in an industry they had been involved in for many years.

“Recycling is something we have been involved in for almost 20 years and is very important to us,” Mr Spruce said.

“Winning the award shows our commitment to not only preventing valuable resources going to landfill but also to promoting the value people with a disability and mental illness bring to our organisation and their contribution to the community and local economy.”

Anne Marie English, owner and operator of Arcon Bottles and Cans said the team were thrilled to be recognised.

“It is very gratifying to have our efforts recognized with the safety award and being part of a scheme that is cleaning up our environment and supporting recycling,” Mrs English said.

In its first year the Containers for Change scheme has created more than 700 new jobs for Queenslanders, seen more than one billion containers returned and more than $1 million dollars paid in refunds to customers.

The Change Maker Awards were presented to winners on the eve of the first birthday of the Containers for Change scheme by Minister for the Environment and the Great Barrier Reef, Ms Leeanne Enoch.

Ken Noye, CEO of Container Exchange, said the achievements of the winners were significant, especially considering some of their businesses were so new.

“So many of these small businesses did not exist a year ago but these operators have established themselves in new markets, in a new industry and they have achieved great success,” Mr Noye said.

“The scheme has provided opportunities for business owners which has, in turn, provided jobs for locals which has improved the well-being of individuals and the communities in which they live.”

Mr Noye said the success of the scheme was a testament to the hard work of operators across the state.

“Our operators are the face of the scheme – engaging and educating customers and promoting the scheme in their local areas,” he said.

“It was a pleasure to be able to recognise our nominees, finalists and winners with these awards and we look forward to seeing more success stories emerge as the scheme matures.”

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