Calling all zero waste heroes – nominations are now open until 30 June for the 2021 Tāmaki Makaurau Zero Waste Awards, which celebrate all those helping reduce waste to landfill across Auckland.
There are seven days to go so if you know anyone in your community working hard to reduce waste now’s the time to nominate them. Nominees can be individuals, groups, schools, businesses or organisations and there are five categories to choose from.
“There are so many people across Tāmaki Makaurau finding creative ways to reduce waste in their local communities whose stories need to be heard,” says Councillor Richard Hills, chair of Auckland Council’s Environment and Climate Change Committee. “Celebrating these people and organisations and their mahi helps inspire others to try new things. It will take all of us to meet Auckland’s target of being zero waste by 2040.”
These are the five award categories:
Rangatahi Leadership – for individuals or groups of rangatahi (young people under 18 years) showing commitment and leadership in reducing waste in their community.
Growing the Movement – celebrating local heroes (individuals or groups) raising awareness, inspiring change and spreading the aroha of the zero waste kaupapa.
Community Collaboration – businesses or social enterprises who are ‘walking the talk’ by demonstrating a commitment in building community partnerships to reduce waste.
Cultural Connection – individuals or groups using culturally appropriate approaches to educate, inspire and care for their communities to reduce waste.
Innovation – initiatives demonstrating the circular economy in action, and ‘making it happen’ through demonstrable results.
This year’s awards are being hosted by EcoMatters Environment Trust, in partnership with Auckland Council, in support of its aspirational goal of zero waste by 2040.
“We’re keen to hear the amazing stories of those trailblazers who are championing innovative ways to minimise waste,” says Charlotte Moore, chair of EcoMatters Environment Trust.
“The Zero Waste Awards are a chance to celebrate individuals, groups and organisations working towards achieving zero waste in Auckland. We know the recognition means the world to those who are acknowledged.”
Kai Conscious Cafe on Waiheke Island won a Zero Waste Award in 2019. This community organisation turns rescued food into delicious meals for their local community.
“It meant such a lot to us to win that award. When you do projects such as these and get to enjoy the benefits of doing the right thing in terms of rescue food and getting a lovely meal out to your community, it does feel great. But when you are actually rewarded for it too, then it’s brilliant!” says Kathy Voyles, the cafe’s coordinator.
Nominations for the 2021 awards can be made at ecomatters.org.nz/zerowasteawards between 1 and 30 June.