Major Recycling Appeals Partners

Close to $1 million raised through our major recycling appeals

The digital connectivity offered by our Reverse Vending Machines, combined with the state-wide coverage of our network, allows us to partner with major charities on unique fundraising campaigns. Machine users can support a worthy community cause simply by returning eligible bottles and cans and selecting the on-screen “donate” option.

Our major recycling appeals have raised close to $1 million for charities including Beyond Blue, OzHarvest, Rural Aid, Starlight, The Salvation Army and WWF-Australia. We’ve helped communities affected by natural disasters and more recently by the COVID-19 pandemic. These campaigns highlight a specific cause, raise substantial awareness about a charity’s work and community impact, and give people a direct and tangible way to help.

These major recycling appeals have so far raised::

  • $423,519 through the “Bottles for the Bush” appeal, with 100 per cent of the funds going to Rural Aid to assist farmers and rural families.
  • $244,383 through the “Bottles CAN Change Lives” appeal, with funds supporting Beyond Blue, OzHarvest and The Salvation Army on the back of the COVID crisis in 2020.
  • $144,515 through the “Cans for Koalas” appeal with funds going towards WWF’s Australian Wildlife and Nature Recovery Fund to help restore affected habitats of iconic local species, following the 2019 bushfires.
  • $120,000 through the “Containers 4 kids” appeal, with funds helping Starlight Children’s Foundation brighten the lives of over 3,000 sick kids in hospital and their families.

Find out more about our last Major Recycling Appeal

Hear the story of Rob Simmons based in Dunedoo, one of hundreds of NSW farmers deeply impacted by the drought in 2019.

Rural Aid Australia

In partnership Rural Aid

Major Recycling Appeals

In September 2019, 99 per cent of NSW was in drought and more than half of the state was already at “high fire danger” warning levels. The goal of the “Bottles for the Bush” recycling appeal was to encourage community members to donate 2.5 million drink container refunds over the 2019-20 summer to raise $250,000 for essential hay for livestock, as well as food for struggling families.

The recyclers of NSW achieved their target in just 16 weeks, raising more than $423,000 across the reverse vending machines network (+320 machines). 100 per cent of these funds were donated to Rural Aid to assist Australian farmers and rural communities devastated by drought and bushfires.

The ease with which our partners were able to come together to create a win-win opportunity was nothing short of amazing. ~ Charles Alder, Co-Founder ex CEO of Rural Aid 


In partnership with Starlight

Starlight Foundation

The COVID-19 pandemic has left kids in hospital facing more isolation and loneliness than ever before. With more than 600,000 children admitted to hospital each year, TOMRA Cleanaway partnered with Starlight Children’s Foundation to create the ‘Container 4 Kids’ recycling appeal.

Despite the surge in COVID cases in January 22 followed by heavy rainfalls in March, NSW recyclers donated over 1.22 Million drink container refunds towards the appeal, helping raise a total of $122,544 for Starlight Children’s Foundation. These funds have helped brighten the lives of more than 3,100 sick kids in hospital and their families.

The concept is so simple yet so powerful and the first of its kind. We’re seeing healthy kids collecting and returning to support sick kids and their families as well as the environment. With the support of TOMRA and Cleanaway and the help of the community, Starlight can continue to bring happiness to sick kids when they need it most.~ Louise Baxter, CEO of Starlight Children’s Foundation

Rural Aid Australia

In partnership with Beyond Blue, OzHarvest & The Salvation Army

Bottles Can Change Lives

Before COVID-19 hit, 3.24 million Australians were already living below the poverty line. As well as the community health impacts, the pandemic brought significant additional emotional and financial hardship for many. Charities reported a dramatic drop in donations, while demand for their services increased by up to 40 per cent. We partnered with three renowned charities to support those in need by creating the ‘Bottles CAN Change Lives’ recycling appeal.

From August 2020 to February 2021, recyclers were able to donate their drink containers to either Beyond Blue, OzHarvest or The Salvation Army, directly from the screen of their local Reverse Vending Machine. NSW recyclers donated more than 2.44 million drink container refunds, raising $244,000 to help the three charity partners support more than 100,000 of our most vulnerable community members.

The impact of COVID-19 has seen food relief hit an all-time high, with nearly six million Aussies now relying on food relief. At OzHarvest, we know a nourishing meal is more than just food. It means that families who are struggling will be able to take stronger steps to rebuild their lives. Every 5 bottles or cans donated allows us to provide a meal to someone in need, so we are thrilled that TOMRA have chosen to support us with the ‘Bottles can change lives’ recycling appeal. ~ Ronni Kahn, CEO and Founder of OzHarvest.

Rural Aid Australia

In partnership with

Cans For Koalas

During the catastrophic summer bushfires of 2019 – 2020, more than 3 billion Australian animals were killed or injured. The ‘Cans for Koalas‘ recycling appeal was launched in February 2020 to give people an easy way to help WWF-Australia provide ongoing care to injured wildlife and restore natural habitats. Despite the entry of the pandemic, recyclers of NSW donated 1.44 million drink container refunds through their local Reverse Vending Machines, raising more than $144,000 for WWF’s Australian Wildlife and Nature Recovery Fund.

’Cans for Koalas’ was a perfect example of an innovative win-win-win project. Not only it is providing the public with an easy way to help reduce the amount of materials ending up in landfill and our environment, they’re also creating a unique opportunity for communities to band together and support a cause close to their hearts. Plus, it’s a great alternative way to donate and all funds raised helped WWF-Australia to continue providing ongoing care and recovery to bushfire-affected wildlife around Australia.” ~ Kathryn Birch, Senior Impact Partnerships Manager, WWF-Australia

Other ways charities and NFP organisations are benefiting from the scheme


See how charity operators generate a significant revenue stream that gets invested back into social enterprises, creating new employment opportunities or funding vital community programs


Major recycling appeals have raised close to $1 million for large charities. Find out how these appeals benefit state-wide charities, help drive community impact, and give people a direct and tangible way to help.


Over 650 small and large charities, schools and community groups have become an on-screen donation partner raising over $2 Million from drink container refunds since scheme commencement.


An unlimited number of charities and not-for-profits can benefit from fundraising through the app, receiving donations from ANY Reverse Vending Machines across NSW. With no upfront costs, no ongoing overhead, this digital fundraising tool gives access to hundreds of thousands potential donors


Find out how community groups proactively engage their volunteers and supporters to collect millions of drink containers, returning them to their local Reverse Vending Machines or Collection Point to access cash refunds.