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CQUni partnership drives Upcycle Village plans for Rocky

Published:02 June 2021

The Upcycle Village workshop for Rockhampton Regional Council stakeholders facilitated by CQUni's Office of Social Innovation.

Central Queensland businesses wanting to divert waste from landfill can look forward to innovative alternatives, as CQUniversity's Office of Social Innovation partners with Rockhampton Regional Council to plan an 'Upcycle Village' for the region.

The potential ‘Upcycle Village’ would divert waste from the landfill, and CQUniversity is supporting consultation with businesses to drive the design.

RRC Waste and Recycling Councillor Shane Latcham said businesses who would like to save on landfill fees and see more of their waste recycled were invited to come along to a workshop on Wednesday 2 June to help shape ideas.

“This project is still in very early stages at the moment,” Cr Latcham said.

“The reason we want to talk to businesses is because a significant amount of the waste that is created – such as textiles, wood, e-waste and organic waste – is potentially recoverable. It’s actually a resource for new items.

“However, at the moment a lot of this is ending up straight in landfill, which is bad for the environment and bad for their bottom line.

“We really want to work with these businesses to understand what’s currently going to landfill and how we could work together to recover these materials in order to guide our plans for a potential Upcycle Village.

“This all forms part of our Waste Strategy, and our vision to become a zero waste community by 2050.”

CQUniversity Social Innovation Program Manager Steve Williams led a workshop for industry stakeholders on Wednesday 2 June, and said it's an exciting project.

“Thanks to the Queensland Government and the Queensland Social Enterprise Council, CQUni is thrilled to be working with Rockhampton Regional Council to help move towards a more circular economy,” Mr Williams said.

The initiative is being supported through QSEC's Reset and Recovery with Impact project, working with emerging entrepreneurs across Far North Queensland, Central Queensland and the Western Darling Downs, with $200,000 in funding support from the Queensland Government.

As part of the QSEC project, CQUniversity’s Office of Social Innovation has designed and delivered ideation workshops for local social enterprises and entrepreneurs to create new business approaches to meet post-pandemic challenges, including Rockhampton Regional Council.

QSEC CEO Elise Parups said CQUniversity’s support ensured the project really understood the needs of business in regional Queensland.

“Ashley Clarke and Steve Williams have helped us frame up the analysis of the needs, and what ideation could do to inform how businesses respond to new and emerging issues,” Ms Parups explained.

Following the co-design “reset” sessions, enterprise and business leaders were invited to participate in the ideation program, which began in February.

Other ideation participants included Base Services in the Western Darling Downs, Strong Communities in Central Queensland, and First Nations people driving Indigenous owned and led enterprises in Far North Queensland.