What will Social Enterprise & Recycling do for our community?

Recyclers Volunteers

Some of Russell Recyclers volunteers who set up and monitored the recycle stations for the July 2017 Russell Birdman Festival.

A recycling and waste management, community owned and operated social enterprise, will significantly contribute towards community resilience and ongoing sustainability.

Russell faces dwindling school roles, difficulty for young families to make a living locally and an ageing permanent population, so our community has much to gain from a vibrant, active, sustainable social enterprise.

Through the establishment of this enterprise, we will create employment and training opportunities and contribute towards generating additional community wealth that remains local, at the same time keeping our town looking beautiful. It will have a significant beneficial environmental impact - ensuring our position as socially responsible kaitiaki (caretakers) of the environment, for future generations.

Why are we so Passionate About Recycling?

This quote, from George Bernard Shaw, sums it up for us:
“We are made wise not by the recollection of our past but by the responsibility for our future”

Once established, Russell Recyclers will be self-sustaining and all revenue generated will be reinvested into the expansion of this valuable community project.


We are determined to reach our goal, and have successfully achieved a number of milestones towards it, including the following:

• We have an enthusiastic committee, who share this common vision
• We have established a Memorandum of Understanding with our umbrella and legal entity the Far North Resilient Communities Charitable Trust.
• Russell Ratepayers and Citizens Association have donated a small, lock-up garden shed where our safety equipment etc will be stored.
• FNDC have agreed to provide and locate eight recycle bins at various sites around the Russell business area and pay $5 for each bag sorted.
• FNDC have also provided a small area of land with a concrete pad close to the Transfer Station, where our volunteers will sort the recyclables.
• Our volunteers have manually cleared as much as possible of the land.
• FNDC have agreed to partly fund the creation of vehicular access to our site and a local contractor has volunteered to complete the site clearance at no cost.
• Our volunteer base is increasing exponentially with over 30 people currently involved, on either a proactive or a need to know basis.
Ultimately, our goal is to gain the FNDC waste management contract for Russell, which at present is held by Broad Spectrum; a branch of the Spanish owned multinational Ferrovial. This, of course, holds very few benefits for the Russell community, with valuable resources that could be recycled ending up in the landfill and profit that should remain local, instead, finding its way into the coffers of a multinational.