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Bristol students raise over £100,000 with city wide recycling campaign

Jamie Corbin

Jamie Corbin

Jamie Corbin

Press release issued: 8 July 2014

Bristol Big Give has raised over £100,000 for local and national charities by encouraging students to donate over 50 tonnes of unwanted goods. The huge total is more than five times larger than last year’s record-breaking sum.

The Bristol Big Give collects unwanted items donated by students living in halls of residence and privately owned accommodation and distributes them to over a dozen charities, as well as increasing awareness of responsible recycling.

A vast range of goods were donated including kitchenware, clothes, food, sports equipment and books.

Students in private accommodation donated over 38 tonnes at 20 temporary British Heart Foundation donation points during the campaign which ran from 1 May to 7 July.

Julie Paffett, British Heart Foundation Regional Stock Generator, said: “We’ve been delighted with the response from the Bristol Big Give and the overwhelming support. Each BHF shop needs to receive 400 bags of unwanted items a week and thanks to generous donations from the students, staff and residents of Bristol we have been able to help our shops in the city.”

Students living in halls of residence at the University of Bristol donated over 605 bags totalling six tonnes, whilst students in halls at the University of the West of England donated 1,032 bags totalling over eight tonnes.

A sorting event was held in the Victoria Rooms between 30 June and 2 July, where donations collected from halls of residence were sorted and distributed to local charities including Foodcycle, One25 and Children’s Hospice South West.

Volunteer Mariya Marinova, a Computer Science student at the University of Bristol, said: “Our waste actually has an immense value to others in need and it’s been great being involved in a project that has such a positive impact in my community.”

Quinn Runkle, Student Green Fund Project Coordinator at UBU, said: "Students are at the heart of the Bristol Big Give – our student volunteers have worked tirelessly for over 500 hours to sort the donations and bag them up for charities. Students have been really keen to take part in the Bristol Big Give – they understand their unwanted items make a massive difference to charities whilst also keeping Bristol clean."

The annual campaign is organised by the Bristol Student Community Partnership, a collaboration between the University of Bristol, University of Bristol Students’ Union (UBU), University of the West of England, University of the West of England Students’ Union (UWESU), and Bristol City Council.

Among the assortment of goods collected, a few unusual items crept in, including a chicken-shaped hat, a full bag of ‘Find me on Tinder’ t-shirts, an inflatable desert island, 30 identical Wilkinson's pot and pan sets and an outlandish range of onesies including Elmo, a teddy bear and Santa Claus.

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