b'2021/22 ANNUAL REPORTMedia HighlightsOUR VOLUNTEERS - MAUREEN BURTMaureen Burt says you can tell that the Green Connect Op Shop at Wollongong University is part of the Community Resources family for several reasons. People feel safe here, she says, regardless of gender, age or social status. Its clean, its fresh, theres not a mothball in sight. Its a bright, colourful, non-judgemental place to be. The extra bonus for Maureen, who volunteers twice a week after a career in the Community Welfare sector, is that its also great fun. Op Shop Coordinator, Emma Baselier has created such a friendly vibe. We play music. We welcome 24.5K 1.5M everyone who comes through the door. And if some people just want to come in for a chat, thats ok too. Many customers are students and staff on campus, Joe Rasmussen, interviewed by Channel 10s The Project and theres a free bus to Wollongong that stops nearby FOLLOWERS IMPRESSIONSbringing bargain hunters every day. + 8.8 K (YOY) + 21 K (YOY) The staff also go that extra sparkly yard whenever they MEDIA HIGHLIGHTS The effect was immediate. The Soft Landing websitecan.I really love styling, Maureen explains. Finding ACROSS ALL PLATFORMSACROSS ALL PLATFORMS received a huge influx of new visitors, an increase ofa petticoat for a special dress amongst the stock at Community Resources had an outstanding year in400%, within 24 hours. the Unanderra site [where over 47 waste streams terms of media engagement, and the impact thisare sorted] and bringing it to a customer who fits it had on our site operations and public awarenessAt a local level, Soft Landing ACT Manager, Kylie Roberts- perfectlythat is wonderful to see. of our commitment to people and planet was clearFrost, reported an immediate response to an ABC to see.breakfast radio interview in the ACT which resulted in aThe boutique service isnt the only thing regulars come new partnership for the Hume site with Employ for Ability.back for. There is a sewing workshop every fortnight to During a time of lockdowns, financial hardship, andwhich people can bring clothes they need repaired and isolation, Green Connects Community Care PackagesWe feel privileged to share the stories of our work andlearn how to fix them. initiative proved to be an inspiring and positive narrativethe people who make up our organisation.We also do a lot of other creative things, says which generated significant local media attention andOUR BEST MEDIA MOMENTSMaureen. Plastic cutlery is being phased out, thankfully, community support via social media. It was great to seeand soon you wont be able to get it, so we are making this celebration of Green Connects distinct grassroots19 Mar 2022 A Current Affair, Channel 9 little cutlery packs people can keep in their cars or bags collaborations boost the average rate of audienceCould a zero waste farm be the answer to supermarketfor picnics or emergencies. engagement with our website, which rose from 200 pershortages?But even more than the pleasure of being part of this week to 1,5002,000 viewers per week.creative space, Maureen says its the values that align. Green Connects growing reputation as a leader in3 Jan 2022 BBC Newssustainable urban agriculture also received significantGreen Connect: The farm helping refugees build a life inWere constantly looking for new partnerships so no local and international media attention with the prestigiousAustralia waste ever goes to landfill from our store, agrees Annie Commonwealth Secretary General Innovation Award inBurbrook, Engagement and Support Manager at Green 16 Nov 2021 The Project, Change Makers, Channel 10Connect. These include donating bras to For The Girls, September 2021. News crews quickly descended on the 11-acre farm. The story by BBC News brought the positiveHow mattresses are getting lives back on trackdamaged blankets and towels to veterinarian clinicsA shout outwork opportunities we have achievedfor refugees and7 November 2021 Sydney Morning Herald and hospitals, e-waste and old books to Flagstaff where young people to a global audience. The challenge of finding a final resting place for oldthe materials are recycled, and anything that doesnt mattressessell to the Homeless Hub in Wollongong. Metals are After a site visit during which he congratulated the Green24 October 2021 Sydney Morning Heraldalso sold on to a metal recycler.to ourConnect team on the award, The Governor-GeneralRecycling and reusing are not just an environmental of Australia, His Excellency General the HonourableTurning 11 acres of a NSW dumping site into a world- issue, says Maureen. With the cost of living rising, and David Hurley AC DSC (Retd) and his wife Mrs Lindaclass farm many people unable to pay rent or bills, there is a real Hurley became co-patrons of Community Resources, an30 September 2021 Illawarra Mercury crisis.volunteersopportunity which will further enhance the reputation of the whole organisation.Green Connect wins global Commonwealth InnovationEvery sale we make is a step towards a happier world, On nationwide television, Soft Landing made an impactAward she says.too. Our NSW Manager, Joe Rasmussen, was featured20 July 2021 Illawarra Mercury Its because of volunteers like Maureen that the Op on Channel 10s primetime program, The Project. ThisGreen Connect giving groceries, care packages toShop UOW has become a flourishing enterprise for exposure to the Projects 70,000+ online subscribersIllawarra families in need people and planet. allowed us to share the Soft Landing story with a substantial mainstream audience. PAGE 48 Maureen Burt, Green Connect Op Shop volunteer PAGE 49'