ReTrade lends helping hand to needy families

2017-11-29 06:00
Traders using recycling as an opportunity to provide for their families.Photo:SUPPLIED

Traders using recycling as an opportunity to provide for their families.Photo:SUPPLIED

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THE ReTrade Project, a community-based recycling and social empowerment initiative, has welcomed more than 200 traders to support the Nelson Mandela Bay’s impoverished communities since coming into existence in April.

The project gears for sustainability and provides hope to people from disadvantaged areas in the Bay, by exchanging recycled waste for basic food items.

With a dual aim of benefiting both the environment and the people of the region, ReTrade targets participants who are willing to seize the opportunity of turning waste into tradable commodities.

Founder of the ReTrade Project Maria Grewar explained that the participants would collect recyclable waste such as tins, plastic bottles, cardboard, white paper, mixed paper and glass, and bring these recyclables to the ReTrade trading store situated at Fountain Vineyard Christian Fellowship in Walmer Heights.

“In exchange, they would then get basic grocery items, such as food or toiletries,” Grewar said.

With their vision to ‘create a greener planet with less hungry families,’ Grewar said the project instils principles such as work ethic, responsibility, workplace skills and a saving mentality.

“Over 2 492 bags of assorted waste has been recycled since April, proving that bartering is not dead but fully alive.

“This has the capability of restoring dignity by helping those in need with a hand-up in life, rather than a hand-out.”

The project has an assembled volunteer team who offer their time to assist the respective traders.

“There are many ways to contribute. We encourage individuals and businesses alike to get involved,” Grewar added.

The ReTrade Project welcomes food donations, financial contributions, recycling donations and volunteer participation at their trade store.

Jessica Ronaasen, a social worker from Port Elizabeth, encouraged all corners of society to unite behind the project’s aim of uplifting often neglected populations in the metro.

“We encourage families, friends, businesses, charities and all those wanting to make a difference to take up the challenge of supporting this community-based recycling project,” Ronaasen said. For more info visit The Re-Trade Project facebook page.

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