Full-service marketing agency PMW Communications has launched the second phase of the Salvation Army Trading Company’s Recycle with Michael campaign. The scheme aims to divert thousands of tonnes of unwanted clothing and shoes away from landfill by driving awareness of the importance of textile recycling amongst school children.
Phase 1 of the project saw PMW contact primary schools from 13 counties with an aim of signing up 100 schools to the programme, spearheaded by mascot ‘Michael’. Children were given bags to fill with clothing, footwear and textiles that were no longer used by their family, with all the items to be either recycled or passed onto the Salvation Army to sell in its shops.
The programme is also an important way for schools to generate much-needed funds, as a percentage of the bags’ financial value is donated back to the school to spend how they wish. The remaining funds raised go towards supporting The Salvation Army’s important work to help vulnerable people from all walks of life in communities across the UK.
A mix of PR, direct mail and social media was used to engage schools, and downloadable classroom packs about the importance of recycling were provided to children.
In total 236 schools signed up, with 64,328 pupils donating just under 69 tonnes of unwanted textiles, and 101 pieces of media coverage was achieved.
Following the success of phase 1 of the project, PMW has now targeted schools from a further 19 counties with the aim of targeting the whole country by the end of the year.
Gemma Hook, B2C PR Director at PMW Communications, commented:
“It’s estimated that 300,000 tonnes of clothing are sent to landfill every year1, which is totally unsustainable. In an age of throwaway fashion, the Recycle with Michael project is vital to get children in the habit of recycling and donating clothing and textiles from an early age.
“The project really resonates with schools, as unlike other recycling schemes it gives them lesson plans and a chance to receive much-needed funds while supporting a charity. We’re delighted to be continuing to work with Salvation Army Trading Company Ltd to run Recycle with Michael with more schools and engage even more children.”
Further information about the Recycle with Michael campaign can be found on its website – www.recyclewithmichael.co.uk.
1 WRAP: Valuing Our Clothes: the cost of UK fashion.