Bedding down for growth: RRA acquires Soft Landing social enterprise

A new era of social enterprise in waste management has begun, with Resource Recovery Australia acquiring ‘Soft Landing’ Mattress Recycling and two more Resource Recovery Centres in Dunmore, Moss Vale, NSW.

This is amazing news!

Soft Landing is a brilliant example of Resource Recovery Australia’s waste to wages agenda in action. Over a period of 8 years the Soft Landing team, led by Bill Dibley, Andrew Douglas and Stan Brookes, have developed the techniques and technologies to turn a problem waste stream (used mattresses) into a social enterprise with impact.

This acquisition by RRA will enable the growth Soft Landing is ready for. Soft Landing currently service over 28,000 square kilometres of Local Government Areas in NSW, comprising over 2,700,000 people. This week, Soft Landing head to Wangara in Perth to establish their first WA facility. It is an exciting time, as our Resource Recovery Centres and Soft Landing facilities each expand and grow.

Recycling with impact!

Mission Australia NSW State Director Ben Carblis is excited that RRA will continue the work that Mission Australia started.

“We have been proud to run these social enterprises for several years, and have seen them provide countless opportunities to disadvantaged jobseekers in the Illawarra and Sydney. As an organisation that aims to reduce homelessness and strengthen communities, these programs have gone a long way towards achieving those goals”
“RRA has the capacity to invest in these programs to ensure they are sustainable into the future. We are confident that this group of social enterprises will continue to expand and flourish, and retain the same focus on providing opportunities to people experiencing barriers to work”

Sarah Chisholm, spokesperson for Resource Recovery Australia had this to say:

“We are excited to take on this fantastic suite of social enterprises, which have delivered innovation and outcomes in terms of the environment, training and job opportunities for people across Sydney and The Illawarra”
RRA’s Sarah Chisholm and Bill Dibley with Soft Landing staff in Smithfield.
“We look forward to supporting this next phase of growth for Soft Landing. Combining forces gives Resource Recovery Australia and Soft Landing the expertise and scale to further roll out our social enterprise models, working with Council, industry and community. All our social enterprises are designed to deliver higher diversion of resources from landfill and to build social capital and meaningful work in local communities. I would like to also acknowledge the Westpac Foundation, our major partner in achieving this vision ”
- Sarah Chisholm

RRA and Mission Australia have now commenced the implementation phase, with the final transition date set for 15 December 2015. All Soft Landing staff will retain their jobs under RRA.

We at RRA are so excited that we have a fantastic bunch of new, talented individuals joining our family of social enterprises. We know that they are going to fit in just fine and that together we will continue to grow social enterprise in Australia.

Bill Dibley, former NSW Manager of Mission Australia Social Enterprise, is working with Resource Recovery Australia throughout the transition and is excited about the change:

“I am loving being part of the RRA team, and we are all looking forward to the opportunities that will be created through our growing reach and team”

Stay tuned for much more good news that is being developed behind the scenes, and thank you for your ongoing support!

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