Have you thought about reusing staff uniforms and corporate wear?
According to the waste charity WRAP, an estimated £140 million worth of clothing is sent to UK landfill each and every year, while around 300,000 tonnes of used clothes are burned or buried in landfill each year.
Old and unwanted clothes can and should be recycled, repurposed, upcycled, or reused by others. Throwing anything in the general waste must always be a last resort.
And this approach is also true for uniforms and corporate wear, including footwear, workwear, protective wear, and casual wear – for any organisation.
By setting up a project focusing on swapping and reusing uniforms, as part of the reuse Warp It redistribution system, you will save your organisation money, reduce disposal costs, cut carbon emissions, and prevent sending waste to landfill.
There are a number of Warp It members who have done exactly this, with one NHS Trust saving £7,000 in just 12 months.
This impressive success was achieved when the Trust held a declutter day and was given 50 uniforms; within the following few weeks a further 200 uniforms, of all sizes and colours, were donated. Many of them brand new and still in their packaging.
As a result, they held a uniform rummage event, which attracted a great deal of interest with staff bringing and swapping every type of uniform available – from reception and office uniforms to surgical scrubs.
What’s more, this then spurred further activities including the formation of a sewing group that now makes uniforms and scrubs for the hospital Trust.
The Trust went through a huge shortage of scrubs during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially at the beginning when deliveries from abroad had stopped. It went through an acute shortage and its surplus stock ran out.
Then a local group of sewers started making uniforms for hospital staff and they’re still doing it to this day! Some stunning pieces of work have been donated and all are handmade.
Reusing uniforms is just one way that the Warp It system can enable worthwhile projects in your organisation while supporting the move to a Circular Economy and improving your green credentials by reducing the amount of clothes in landfill.