The Maitland community came together today to celebrate the new Maitland Return and Earn depot in Rutherford, operated by Vinnies NSW.

Participants were enthusiastically attended the grand opening event. Hosted and MC’d by TOMRA Cleanaway CEO, James Dorney, Yolanda Siaz, CEO St Vincent de Paul Society NSW, Alexandra Geddes, Executive Director of the NSW Environment Protection Authority, and Danielle Smalley, CEO Exchange for Change as well as representatives from the Rotary Club of East Maitland and a number of local sporting groups.

Executive representatives celebrate Maitland Return and Earn Depot opening

James Dorney CEO commented on the fantastic community engagement and support that is delivered through charitable support for Return and Earn operations via TOMRA Cleanaway’s network in New South Wales,

“Not only has Return and Earn put more than $1 billion back into the pockets of households across NSW, it has also supported charities and community groups to the tune of $54 million.”

Vinnies has been a considerable partner for TOMRA Cleanaway since the commencement of the Return and Earn container deposit scheme in New South Wales, and Maitland Return and Earn Depot was another regionally significant location in the Vinnies remit,

“Return and Earn’s automated depots are an important part of the return point network, and enable not-for-profits like St Vincent de Paul to put more money back into the local community with every recycled container, all while helping the environment and providing local jobs.”

“We’re delighted to again partner with the amazing Vinnies team to provide the people of Maitland and surrounds with this convenient new location to recycle your eligible bottles and cans and help your local environment,” said James.

Vinnies continues their ‘good works’

The grand opening of the new large-format depot is a major milestone for Vinnies, who have partnered with Return and Earn network operator TOMRA Cleanaway. This is the first return point of its kind in Maitland, and Vinnies’ 10th Return and Earn depot in NSW.

The bulk-processing facility is designed to quickly process large amounts of eligible drink containers and also supports community fundraising efforts for local not-for-profit groups and charities.

The Maitland community are already enthusiastic recyclers, with more than 128 million containers returned through four local return points available in the area.

Vinnies NSW has been closely involved with Return and Earn since the container deposit scheme launched six years ago. The charity prides itself on providing easy and convenient locations for the community to return their eligible bottles and cans for the 10c refund.

Their partnership with TOMRA Cleanaway for Return and Earn also provides Vinnies with an important revenue stream, supporting their programs and services that help people experiencing poverty and disadvantage.

Yolanda Saiz, CEO of Vinnie’s explains,

“We are delighted with the reception to our tenth bulk Return and Earn depot. Our Maitland site has already processed around 400,000 containers, averaging more than 100,000 containers each week since opening in April.

“The funds are going straight back into helping us provide care and assistance to people doing it tough, to help with household bills, with food, rent, and into supporting our services.”

This article first appeared In the Newcastle Weekly