Disability clients at Centacare’s Learning & Leisure Services on the Sunshine Coast have created a successful social enterprise venture.
Clients have been busy planting succulents into upcycled kitchenware. Upcycling, also known as creative reuse, is the process of transforming waste materials or unwanted products into new materials or products of better quality.
Several second-hand stores, landscaping businesses and gardening enthusiasts donated the goods needed for clients to create each unique pieces.
This creative project has been a fun and rewarding venture for all involved. Several Caloundra businesses such as Villa Verde Living, are now stocking and selling these unique plants! The money from the sales goes straight back into local programs delivered by Centacare.
Jordan Wilson, Learning & Leisure Services Coordinator at Centacare Sunshine Coast believes that this program has achieved a real feeling of self-worth for clients through a wonderful sense of community participation.
“The idea came about when our Sensory Group clients were invited to do some planting at an open garden, owned by a local gardening enthusiast. At the time, we were exploring new program ideas for the NDIS, including social enterprise and work preparation skills.”
“All of our 60 Learning & Leisure clients from both Iluka and the MacKillop Centre have been involved in the planting, making wooden plant stands or sewing the denim aprons they wear when visiting businesses to restock.”
“We called this program ‘Project New Life’- like the NDIS, it represents an opportunity for people to have a new life that they have created for themselves.
Our plant creations using upcycled kitchenware is creating new life out of old and our social enterprises (we are about to start offering lawn maintenance services) is the start of a new life, heading in new directions,” said Jordan.