Wastebusters receives major government grant

Pictured: Minister Eugenie Sage at Wastebusters yesterday.

Minister Eugenie Sage was in Wanaka yesterday to announce that $121,827 of funding from the Ministry for the Environment’s Waste Minimisation Fund will be granted to Wanaka Wastebusters – Resourceful Communities project. The idea is to help people reduce and reuse, rather than focus solely on recycling which can be problematic. 

Resourceful Communities will get people involved in creating practical solutions that make our communities more resourceful through fun and inspirational workshops, challenges and events. The project will include bringing Repair Cafes to the district, highlighting the impact of fast fashion with a local challenge, and hosting workshops and events, like the upcoming Waste Free Fair.

“Like other countries, New Zealand’s economy to date has been based on a ‘take, make and dispose model, which treats the resources our planet gives us as ‘free’ and disposable,” said Minister Sage. “If we adopt a ‘make-use-return’ model, where products are designed to have a long life, and can be easily reused, recycled, remanufactured, or composted and returned to nature, that reduces waste.” 

Wastebusters general manager Sue Coutts said, “People are noticing they’ve got too much stuff, and they are worried about the long-term effects of plastic in the environment but they don’t always know what to do about it. They like the idea of a circular economy but they aren’t sure how they can help to make it a real thing.” 

“Wastebusters has some useful ideas to share, that will help people understand what’s happening, manage what is coming into their lives and reduce the amount of rubbish going out. We really appreciate the opportunity the WMF grant gives us to focus on this important work.” 

Wastebusters project manager Sophie Ward said: “It’s great to see funds for practical action coming into small communities to support organisations to work with their communities to reduce and reuse their waste. 

“At Wastebusters we see first hand the impact of fast fashion so we’re excited to be working on projects which will raise awareness of the issue of textile waste. And we’re really excited about hosting Repair Cafes next year to promote the benefits of repair rather than dispose.” 

Through the Resourceful Communities project, Wastebusters will also host workshops, speakers and events like the upcoming Waste Free Fair to provide solutions and motivation for people to live with less waste. 

“This project builds on Wastebusters’ great work,” said Eugenie Sage.


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