THE BEST TYPE OF WASTE IS WASTE THAT IS NOT GENERATED
In the Emmaus Navarra ragpicking community we use the waste hierarchy as outlined in the European Directive and which prioritises, first and foremost, waste prevention.
Waste prevention is based around producing and consuming less and in a more responsible manner, faced with the capitalist model of buying, throwing away and buying again.
Since our early days, our community has, in addition to collecting second-hand objects and materials, always strived to raise awareness amongst the general public regarding waste prevention, responsible consumption, reuse and recycling.
Thus, as part of an agreement with the district of Pamplona, we have been leading various initiatives since 2015 to raise awareness on this topic amongst schoolchildren, other groups and amongst the general public.
We run three activities in order to raise awareness about the need for waste prevention.
- Our ‘Fix-It-Yourself’ Workshop
A space where we provide the tools and guidance free of charge so that everyone is able to fix their broken objects. The slogan for these sessions is “don’t bin it, fix it”
- Classroom sessions: we have two rooms available which we use to host the District of Pamplona’s Environmental Awareness course. From October to June, we run weekly waste prevention sessions free of charge: teaching people to cook using leftovers, teaching people how to sew and mend broken household objects, etc. We also have the ‘Just Sew It’ room where people can come in for weekly sewing sessions held in the evening on a weeknight ( www.mcp.es/actividades ).
- Visits: our door is always open to anyone who wishes to learn more about our group. We receive visits from primary schools, secondary schools, and professional training institutes on a daily basis. On Saturdays we welcome the general public and other groups. We show all visitors how we sort the items and how we prepare them for reuse/recycling. We also show them our sales area and a video about the Circular Economy.
More than 3,000 people visit our centre every year.
( www.mancoeduca.org )
For our waste prevention activities, we currently have:
2 companions/technicians working on full-time contracts in the Fix-It-Yourself workshop
1 coordinator for these activities
8 trainers from the District of Pamplona carrying out visits
9 workshop facilitators from the Pamplona authorities helping to lead the classes
All of these activities are led alongside the District of Pamplona, the local authorities who are in charge of waste management for our region.
Our Fix-It-Yourself workshop is a service included in our agreement with the local authorities and all of the courses and visits we run are part of their Environmental Awareness programme.
- Up to 2012: schools visiting our premises in Sarasa. These visits were led by staff from our community, teaching schoolchildren about our process. We had visits from 2-3 schools per year during this period.
- 2012-2018: during this period, we started to work with the local authorities in Pamplona. The visits were led by one person from our community alongside a trainer from the local authorities. We opened visits to all schools in the region, with a maximum frequency of 2 visits per month.
We had around 900 schoolchildren visiting our sites during this period. We taught them about the processes we go through in the different parts of our premises and showed them how we treat electronic waste. We showed them how to fix a plug socket and presented a video outlining how to properly recycle electronic waste.
- 2015: Launch of our Fix-it-Yourself workshop. It has three different sections: carpentry, electrics, and a bicycle/mechanical section.
- 2018: Launch of our classroom sessions and of visits to the CPR in Berriozar. These visits have now become a daily occurrence and are led by trainers from the local authorities.
In 2020 we had to stop our on-site visits and classes due to the Covid crisis.
We hope to be able to relaunch and strengthen all of our activities in 2021, with similar figures to 2019 when we had a total of around 5,000 participants (split across our workshops, visits, and classroom activities).
Our objective is to raise awareness amongst the people of Navarra on the topic of waste prevention.
The Fix-It-Yourself workshop:
The number of trainees has been constantly on the rise since we opened the workshop back in 2015. We currently have over 2,000 people coming in to fix objects every year which equates to an average of 8 people per day.
N° OF TRAINEES
2016 : 711
2017 : 1230
2018 : 1662
2019 : 2275
Over 3,000 people come to visit our premises every year. We have a range of people coming to see us, from schoolchildren to the general public.
2018-2019 : 123 groups, 2645 persons
2019-2020 : 92 groups, 2181 persons
GROUPS (OPEN TO ALL)
2018-2019 : 49 groups, 346 persons
2019-2020 : 47 groups, 423 persons
At the Emmaus Navarra ragpicking community we believe that our society must undergo a transition towards a more social, circular model that reduces consumption and production and which encourages reuse or, as a last resort, the recycling of materials and objects. Our new societal model should, first and foremost, seek to guarantee the wellbeing of all, it should promote a truly social economy and it should guarantee the defence of our environment.
Our partnership with the local authorities in Pamplona has inspired other regions and groups.
In recent years we have explained how we operate to various local councils, institutions, and groups.
A recent example of the impact of our activities was the launch of a repair workshop similar to our Fix-It-Yourself workshop in O Rosal, Galicia.
Elsewhere in Navarra similar initiatives have been launched such as the Repair Café which is organised once a month by Geltoki ( www.geltoki.red ) or the Konpondu Café which is held in Sakana https://www.facebook.com/batutasakana ).
All of the activities that are part of this initiative are quite recent so we are not going to make any changes for the time being, focusing instead on strengthening what we already have.