MetPac-SA, the Producer Responsibility Organisation (PRO) that represents the metal
packaging recycling industry in South Africa, has once partnered with [dot]GOOD, South
Africa’s leading cause-marketing agency, to expand its Trash4Treats competition to thirty
under-resourced schools in the Western Cape. By collecting as much recyclable packaging
as possible, these schools put themselves in line to win their share of R50 000.00 which can
be used for much-needed school upgrades.

This inter-schools competition was launched for the first time in 2019 and encourages
primary school children, but also their parents, educators, and the surrounding communities
to recognise that waste has value. They get to experience the principles of a circular
economy in a practical and immediate way, while post-consumer packaging that might have
ended up in landfill or the environment, now generates much-needed funds for the schools.
The [dot]GOOD team manages the competition by firstly distributing leaflets and garbage
bags to thirty schools in regions like Phillipi, Khayelitsha, Gugulethu, Heideveld, Nyanga and
Mitchell’s Plain. They also remind learners of the special metal collection challenge which
was sponsored by Metpac-SA. The awareness campaign kicks off with a fun-filled, in-person
activation day during which the Trash4Treats team of educators and their mascot, called
Trashy, visited the schools. Pupils are taught that waste has value and the importance of
recycling. In addition, each school also receives a large, branded collection bins to aid in
their ongoing collection efforts.

During the following few months after the initial activation, these schools are encouraged to
collect as much metal packaging as possible, including aluminium cooldrink cans, tin food
cans, coffee and baby formula cans, paint cannisters and even foil food trays.
As part of the campaign, Trash4Treats also connects the participating schools with local
waste collectors who buy back the collected materials at the going rate, thereby helping to
form a mutually beneficial and sustainable relationship between the school and the waste
entrepreneur that benefits the whole community.

The excitement reaches fever pitch approximately six months later when the first collection
days take place. Again the participating schools are visted, but this time to collect and weigh
the metal collections. The grade that collects the most metal is then rewarded with a treat
(e.g. canned food or cooldrinks) sponsored by the one of the Members of MetPac-SA.
Recyclable waste continues to be collected by the participating schools and all waste is
tallied at the end of the year. The Trash4Treats team announces which school receives the
first prize of R30,000, followed by R15 000 for the second prize and R5 000 for the 3rd prize.

Good to know:

Approximately 10 % of the waste collected with the Trash4Treats campaign consists of
valuable metal packaging, which is the ideal illustration of a circular economy in action since
it can be recycled indefinitely. Metal enters the material-to-material loop and is continually
recycled, ensuring its availability for future generations. It is a great privilege for MetPac-SA
and our members to support this amazing awareness and education campaign by
Trash4Treats which reaches an important demographic of our target audience.

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