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School children from Greig City Academy in Hornsey and Rokesley Infant School in Crouch End have helped launch a new book recycling scheme in Haringey, donating their old books to help raise money to buy school books for young people in East Africa.

Haringey Council’s recycling and waste management services provider Veolia Environmental Services has joined forces with educational charity READ International to provide dedicated book recycling points throughout the borough.

The books from the banks will be sold or recycled to raise revenue for READ to purchase locally relevant and up-to-date books in Tanzania. The aim is to extract as much value as possible from every book collected – no book is ever sent to landfill.

The scheme has already been piloted by Veolia in London in the City ofWestminster, where over 12,500 books were collected within the first six months alone, and in Lambeth, Kingston-upon-Thames and Tower Hamlets. Veolia and READ International are working together to identify further opportunities to introduce the scheme to local authorities across the capital and beyond.

Jean-Francois Moreau Veolia’s contact manager for Haringey, said: “As well as working to increase recycling rates in the borough we are always looking for innovative ways to reduce waste and help communities. We have seen how successful the READ book scheme has been in other parts of London and we are sure that we can have a positive impact on the number of books sent out to help make a difference to young people in Tanzania.”

Montse Pejuan, READ International’s Country Director in Tanzania, said: “READ International is delighted to be working in partnership with Veolia and Haringey Council to extend our network of public book donation bins withinLondon.  Each book donated to READ International is used to improve the quality of education and the lives of young people in Tanzania. This is a unique and innovative way for the people to not only support a worthy charitable cause but to reduce the amount of waste they throw away.”

The education team from Veolia in Haringey do a lot of work with local schools to offer recycling programs and waste related workshops. Schools across the borough have already been promoting the book banks to their pupils who have started thinking about books that they don’t read at home anymore that they could donate to the charity.

In Haringey there are a team of Environmental Champions who are all local residents promoting environmental issues in their local area. The Environmental Champions will be promoting the book banks to local groups and their local community.

The book recycling points are situated at the following locations:

Town Hall Approach Road, N17

Turnpike Lane, N8 - Junction with Green Lanes and High Road

Colney Hatch Lane, N10 – Junction with Alexandra Park Road

Tottenham Lane, N8 – Junction with Rokesley Avenue

North Hill, N6 – Outside Hillcrest Estate

Pictures on the website. 


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Replies to This Discussion

Great, delighted to hear this Helen.

I had a whole bookshelf of books ready to go somewhere. The nearest charity shop seems pretty much to have given up on books and had all theirs marked down to 50p in an attempt to clear them out. So I tried the READ container beside the Hornsey Historical Society. I reckon it has a design flaw. My arms were aching from carrying the four heavy bags of books, but the slit for putting them in was very wide but no taller then a typical letter box, so I had to put them all through, slowly, one at a time. Until I got to Don Quixote, and two hard backs which simply will not go in at all, and I had to take them home.

So, the rest of my disposals went to Oxfam on Park Road. Apparently all the books get sorted , just in case I've put in a rare expensive one in error, distributed to stores where they are likely to sell, and, simply by confirming I pay income tax I can get money back from the chancellor. Slightly cruel perhaps given that he needs it so badly, but so do Oxfam.

Perhaps the slit is small to ensure the contents are protected from the weather?


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