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‘We’re Talking Rubbish!’

robtub robtub  •  2023-02-12  •  No comments  •  The Edinburgh Community Climate Fund  • 

Young and old in the Wee Museum of Memory.jpg
Young and old in the Wee Museum of Memory.jpg

Project code: 48


We will raise awareness amongst older people about climate change and the role of the individual in reducing waste and working towards the net zero target for Edinburgh. In years gone by people recycled for necessity and many older people remember reusing items again and again and the ‘Make do and Mend’ more sustainable way of living. This however, contrasted with greater pollution in rivers and canals due to rubbish and effluence from industry as well as air pollution from coal fires. We have found in our work that some older people do not recycle now for a variety of reasons e.g. lack of awareness, lack of facilities and room or lack of mobility and support. We will talk with older people about these barriers and their ideas to overcome them. We will run cross generational sessions with older people and local schools and youth groups bringing different ages together to discuss attitudes to recycling past and present and raise awareness of climate change and the effects of our own carbon footprint. We will arrange a series of presentations from experts in the field to raise awareness e.g. City of Edinburgh Council Recycling and Friends of the Earth. We will work with a local Zero Waste abstract artist who works with the groups to create imaginative pieces of work from recycled plastic.

We plan to work with members of the Sikh community, African communities and Ukrainian refugees currently housed on the cruise ship in Leith bringing them together to discuss attitudes to recycling in both the younger and older generations. We will utilise our extensive links across the city to engage older people including health and social care, libraries, museums and the voluntary sector. We will also engage with older people in care settings to ensure they are not missed out in a project such as this.

We will create a specialised exhibition and workshop area in Ocean Terminal dedicated to telling the story of recycling in the past and its relation to recycling now. We will investigate areas including transport, food, packaging, heating, ‘make do and mend’, industrial waste as well as looking at use of plastic and our throwaway culture today. We look at the impact negative practices have on our environment and contribute to climate change.

Location: Edinburgh - City wide but based in Ocean Terminal, Leith

Proposed on behalf of: We use reminiscence and community history to bring people together to share memories, learn new skills, improve wellbeing, make new friends and save valuable information for future generations. We run two venues in Ocean Terminal, Edinburgh both open 7 days a week – The Wee Museum of Memory and The Wee Hub (former Debenhams store) with over 200 visitors per day. We run reminiscence groups, arts and craft groups, singing groups, a ‘drop in’ dementia friendly facility, we have a recording studio where we record memories and produce podcasts, we create exhibitions and books full of memories collected, offer a training programme in reminiscence skills and run cross generational projects with schools and local youth groups. We work with all sectors including health and social care, schools, further education and across the voluntary sector. We have a whole range of diverse community groups working with us in The Wee Hub.

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