As Ripple enters its tenth month, it is exciting to take a step back and take stock of our journey so far. We have seen our system in action and while we are still a work in progress, our phase one vision is a reality.
When we launched in March, we had doubts about whether our concept would connect with people, let alone sell essentially empty bags and bins. But thanks to the early support of some pretty amazing individuals things started moving. We are also massively grateful for the early backing we received from NZ Post through their Delivering for Good Programme and All Good Ventures. Their support has given us confidence to keep chipping away – doing the doing.
In the past two months, we have launched our nationwide Gear Drives, with six businesses now having hosted and sponsored a clothing collection in their workplace, including DEFEND, Downer, Hawkins and three Nurture Early Learning Centres. A special mention to Downer who has set up an ongoing collection station at their Kerrs Rd Office, having currently collected a significant 680 items. We hope that more businesses will take us up on the opportunity to host a Gear Drive in 2024, highlighting our mission and sharing their direct impact with their teams and community. We also have modified Gear Drives available for schools who want to get involved.
We have extended our community partnerships. Alongside Oranga Tamariki The Ministry for Children, we’re now delivering to Middlemore Neonatal Unit and Women’s Refuge. But working in this space has shown us just how much there is to do.
To date, our movement has collectively:
💦 Provided 97 children Gear Boxes, ensuring they have clothing for an entire year while saving their families between $200-$400 per child.
💦 Sorted and processed 6606 items
💦 Reused 3974 items in our Gear Boxes
💦Repaired or repurposed 222 items
💦 Recycled 2410 items through Upparel
💦 Prevented 351kg of Greenhouse Gases from entering the atmosphere.
Aside from the numbers, we know we are starting to make a difference by the reaction we get when dropping off the Gear Boxes. From initially, not really being noticed to now having a team to help offload, with social workers wanting to tell us about the latest reactions they have had from their families and kids. Some of which we have shared on our homepage.
Of course, there are days when things don’t go according to plan. Losing our best-performing platform – Instagram and all our followers was, well a bit more than a setback. But this also gave us a chance to step away from the socials which you can get wrapped up in and focus on the bigger picture. We are also battling with space and a relocation (and finding funds for this) will definitely be on the cards in the not-so-distant future.
So what is coming for 2024? As well as highlighting and extending our community of repurpose avenues we will be trialing a new initiative that if it goes well, will help us become fully circular and move a notch closer to becoming financially self-sustainable. More on this in the next update.
Making it easy to support our kids and their environment is what drives us, and as always, we thank you for your support and for joining us in doing just that.
The Ripple Team
0800 328 433
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