Glasgow Wood Recycling recognised for social impact

Social enterprise Glasgow Wood Recycling has been recognised for its social, economic and environmental contribution to the UK.

The organisation, launched in 2006, employs local people as staff and volunteers to sort wood waste for recycling or reuse. Much of the wood is turned into indoor and outdoor furniture, which can be made to bespoke designs, giving a new lease of life to old material.

Glasgow Wood Recycling recognised for social impact
Employees at Glasgow Wood Recycling.

Alongside the furniture sales, Glasgow Wood Recycling has been involved in a wide range of projects with a social benefit, building outdoor spaces and community gardens for local schools and community groups. In total, the organisation says that its projects have saved more than 4,000 tonnes of waste wood from landfill, as well as providing training for 190 people.

The organisation is part of the Community Wood Recycling network, which brings together wood recyclers across the UK that operate as social enterprises, saving resources and creating sustainable jobs.

It has now been shortlisted for a Sustainability Award from the Citi Microentrepreneurship Awards, an initiative from the Citi Foundation, the charitable arm of the investment banking firm Citigroup. The awards highlight the work of ‘microenterprises’, small businesses that are often part-funded by ‘responsible’ business finance.

Bob Annibale, Global Director, Citi Inclusive Finance and Community Development, explained: "The Citi Microentrepreneurship Awards are a celebration of the enterprises and local businesses – like Glasgow Wood Recycling – that are the backbone of our communities. Year upon year, we see the increasing value of microenterprises in the UK, from businesses that have created jobs for marginalised youth, to businesses providing low-cost services for charities, or developing innovative and sustainable food sources.”

Glasgow Wood Recycling has been supported by two loans (in 2011 and 2016) from Glasgow-based responsible finance provider, DSL Business Finance. Nicole Cosgrove, DSL’s Investment Readiness Officer, commented: “We are delighted that Glasgow Wood Recycling has been shortlisted for the Sustainability Awards. It has been a pleasure to be associated with the organisation since 2011 by providing loan support at various stages to assist with its development and growth.

“Its principal objective is via involving local people and communities providing locally accessible products and services that divert wood waste away from landfill and contribute to the sustainable regeneration of the local community. We have no doubt that its success will continue well into the future."

Glasgow Wood Recycling and the other finalists are in the running for a £7,500 cash prize. The results will be announced on 13 March at an awards ceremony in Liverpool.