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Stationery amnesty to help promote reuse and reduce waste

Trust: Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust
Location: All sites across Sussex 

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Circular Economy
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What's the idea?

Nearly every workspace has that cupboard where unused items pile up, discarded. In another corner of the Trust, teams are buying those very items, not realising there’s a surplus elsewhere. In the first instance, money is sitting there doing nothing; in the second money is being spent unnecessarily. It is money we could be spending on patient care, and we haven’t even mentioned the wasted carbon emissions in all this! 

A stationery amnesty gathers in all the unwanted items that teams have and promotes their availability to other teams. At SCFT they used a reuse network called Warp It to advertise the items that were up for grabs, making it easy for staff to share what was available, and nab what they needed. 

Person using computer screen

How you could implement a similar idea

If you’d like to have a stationery amnesty where you work it just takes a bit of planning and collaboration. 

Pick a date to launch and run the amnesty for up to a month. Any longer and people forget to get involved.  

Design a poster, and some communications to promote your amnesty, perhaps your comms team can support you with this, or at least offer some guidance.  

Think about how to share what is available, and how people can collect what they would like to reuse from elsewhere, could your Trust sign up for something like Warp It? Try talking to your estates and facilities waste team to explore this idea. Other ways to promote the unwanted items might be via staff notice boards, or online forums. 

Don’t forget to measure what you save and celebrate your success! 


If you’re interested in reducing waste where you work check out these links for more info that may help.

Sussex Community use Warp It to help redistribute items that are no longer needed in other parts of the Trust, but you don’t need to be a member of Warp It to access some useful tips to promote reuse and reduce waste, the Warp It blog section is brimming with good ideas.

Read this handy 4 step guide to running a stationery amnesty, it is office focused but could be adapted for use in clinical spaces

The Care Without Carbon difference

Cost savings

At Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust Warp It has saved over £43,000 to date
Warp it reuse network logo

Reducing carbon

The carbon savings from Warp It at SCFT are 20,267kg C02 to date, this is the equivalent of taking 8 cars off the road
Illustration of cars on road

Promoting reuse

Over 289 stationery items have been rehomed via Warp It at the Trust since it began
Filing folders
Warp it poster
Warp it poster

What else can I do?

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