Co Down project transforming old pallets to reduce impact of climate change

A Co Down group, formed to help people rebuild their social lives, is using the £10,000 National Lottery grant to work with local teenagers on a project to recycle old pallets into practical items.

A lamp made from pallets by members of The Right Key
A lamp made from pallets by members of The Right Key

Sheila Smyth, development manager at The Right Key in Loughbrickland, said: “For many years we have been supporting people in recovery from mental health issues or addictions through creating crafts and music.

“But just like people, our planet needs support for recovery too.

“Learning from our joiners and skilled volunteers who use our services, young people from local schools will come together to create something for themselves from old used wood from pallets, such as a pen, lamp or crafted ornament.

Adrian Boyd with crafted ornaments

“While gaining new specialist skills in craftmanship and recycling, they will discuss together what needs to be done to reduce the impact of climate change in our area.”

Currently open for applications, the ‘Together for Our Planet’ initiative offers £2.5million in National Lottery funding to support communities across the UK to take action on climate change.

Building on interest around COP 26, it hopes to nurture and develop local ideas and support a legacy of ongoing climate action.

Sheila said: “Our new project will open the minds of young people, helping them think about what they can do personally. We aim to use our influence within the wider community to help address climate and environmental issues, based on our knowledge that a willingness to change can bring lasting recovery.”

A group from The Right Key

Paul Sweeney, The National Lottery Community Fund’s NI Chair, said: “As climate is under the world’s spotlight, it’s encouraging to see people taking action locally and individually.”

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