Transforming waste materials into products and art!

A visionary leadership

Crisis Skylight Newcastle, which recently achieved a Green Mark Level 1 certification, is an education, training and employment centre for homeless and vulnerably-housed people in the heart of Newcastle.

Crisis’ visionary leadership has environmental management at the heart of its business. After putting in place an Environmental Management System (EMS) for their Head Office in London and achieving a Green Mark Level 2 certificate, they are now looking at how to improve the environmental efficiency of other sites in the UK. Long-term objectives are in place and it is recognised that current investment in sustainability will have long term outcomes!

Transforming ‘waste’ into functional products and art!

The 4Rs of ‘Waste Hierarchy’ Reduce, Re-use, Recycle and Recovery, are embedded and successfully applied across all their policies and practices to ensure that they are embraced by all employees, partners and clients. Crisis strives to reduce creation of waste by extending use of their resources and avoiding purchasing unnecessary goods. If waste is produced, it is used as a source of education and inspiration and it is transformed into new functional products or pieces of art!

In the art and crafts workshops and vocational classes such as woodwork, offered by Crisis, mixed ‘waste’ materials are used for creation of new functional and upcycled products, as well as contemporary art. Reuse is a strategic priority for Crisis because it has financial, social and environmental benefits and because it reduces the demand on raw materials!

Reducing operational costs and making better use of every £1 raised!

Materials which cannot be re-used are segregated and recycled. However, Crisis is in the process of developing a baseline and setting targets for reduction of recycling in order to contribute to conservation of resources and reduce economic and environmental costs associated with waste collection and recycling.

Also, Crisis is aware that it is possible to recover materials or energy from waste which cannot be reused or recycled. They check the credentials of the waste carriers they use for each strand of waste they produce.

By following the 4Rs, Crisis expects to cut operational costs and make better use of their resources i.e. to support more vulnerably-housed people. Savings and other financial benefits will come from:

  • Savings on supplies due to conscious purchasing practices
  • Keeping goods in use for longer
  • Lower waste disposal costs
  • Lower energy costs (e.g. from unnecessary printing)
  • Cost recovery through the sale of upcycling and recycling materials
  • Fundraising and tendering opportunities

In addition, it is expected that Crisis’ reputation as an organisation which cares about the environment and the community will be strengthened further. It may lead to new partnerships and project opportunities.

About Green Mark

Green Mark is an environmental certification scheme which helps organisations to:

  • Manage their environmental impacts
  • Save money and resources
  • Evidence a commitment to sustainability

For more information about how Green Mark can help your organisation contact or telephone 02036 971253.