Last Monday (24 January 2022), Reverse Garbage opened its doors to its new, fit-for-purpose warehouse at 30 Carrington Road, Marrickville, after 46 years in its war-time Infantry Drill Hall warehouse at Addison Road.
Having fortified the financial and physical future of the organization, outgoing CEO, Naomi Brennan retired confident that Reverse Garbage is in great hands with incoming CEO, Kirsten Junor who has been with the organization since May 2015.
“I feel privileged to take on the role of CEO of Reverse Garbage. This organisation continues to triumph many obstacles to stand alone in its diversity – of people and product – and inclusivity. Our value to our wonderfully weird community is beyond measure,” said Kirsten Junor, CEO Reverse Garbage.
“It is fantastic for Reverse Garbage, and for our community that we have managed to be able stay in the centre of the inner west’s creative heartland. This part of Marrickville is synonymous with what we are about. We are surrounded by a mixture of last remnants of the inner west industrial area, and the established and emerging creatives,” said Kirsten Junor, CEO.
Kirsten lives and breathes reuse. It wasn’t until she joined Reverse Garbage as Retail Manager that she recognised how much of a role reuse had played in her life – career and lifestyle.
Her years in film and theatre transforming costumes from one period to another on a tight budget, sourcing end of line fabrics for her own fabric production house, and running operations at Dress for Success where preloved clothing empowers women have all drawn on her passion for reuse and the environment.
The new location carries across the industrial warehouse vibe, with a blank canvas on which to recreate the magic of Reverse Garbage. This fresh space opens opportunities for the future of this charity organization.
“We have earmarked space to build two education spaces which will allow us to extend the reach of our sustainability education program which caters all the way from early education through to tertiary education and beyond with our public workshop program,” said Kirsten.
“We’re excited to work closer with talented artists and creatives to showcase the potential of reuse resources and are looking forward to exploring hosting events on our new site – imagine a wedding at Reverse Garbage, no white tablecloths or chair bows in sight!” added Kirsten.
Reuse comes before recycling in the three famous Rs of the waste hierarchy, however, has received less attention and funding. The increasing number of alternative platforms for rehoming items – charity shops, Gumtree, Pay it Forward and Street Bounty Facebook groups – is bringing reuse to the forefront of sustainability discussions.
“We are not threatened by these platforms, in fact we encourage them. The more focus on reuse, the better! These platforms play an important role in domestic and residential items, whereas our niche is in the creative reuse of industrial and commercial discards. You won’t see an op shop accepting a donation of hundreds of plaster teeth molds,” said Kirsten.
“We’ve been educating and advocating in this space for 46 years, so I think it is fair to say we are the experts in reuse. If there are companies that want to support the longevity of our mission, we are open to exploring partnerships and sponsorships. Reach out.”
The new Reverse Garbage warehouse is open at 30 Carrington Road, Marrickville. For more information, visit: www.reversegarbage.org.au for details.
Image: Kirsten Junor (supplied)