Guided by a strong ethos of sustainability, HI is a not-for-profit determined to give back to the community, not only by providing support to vulnerable young people but by being an environmentally friendly solution to the growing problem of ‘e-waste’. We divert old mobile devices from landfill by giving recycled and repaired mobile phones to young people currently in WA’s justice system – giving the phones a new lease of life while providing a service to those in need. Our sustainability goal is not just incidental to our aim of addressing access and equity challenges in youth justice but a primary aim in itself.
Our purpose and actions are grounded as equally in environmental concerns as they are in social ones.
For most Australians, mobile phones are an essential part of everyday life. Nearly nine out of ten Australians own a smartphone, and on average they spend three hours a day using it.However, the sheer number of mobile phones produced means that there is a growing, worldwide e-waste problem where valuable resources are going to landfill. Mobile Muster estimates that there are 25 million unused phones being stored in Australian homes. 20 million of these are still working and reusable.
We recognise that there are two problems here. The first is that given mobile phones are essential for the average Australian, those Australians who do not have access to a mobile device are at a clear disadvantage. The second issue is that an excessive number of devices will end up in landfill. HI has devised a simple way in which to tackle both of these problems: taking old, unused devices, repairing them, and donating them to those Australians who need them most.
Our first and foremost means of procuring devices is through donations from our partner, Total Green Recycling. TGR is passionate about tackling Australia’s growing waste problem and putting a stop to the flow of toxic e-waste to landfill. TGR both recycles old parts as well as recovers useful materials and redirects them into green enterprise solutions, including HI. The devices we receive have been donated first to TGR, who repairs them and donates them on to us. The average lifespan of a mobile phone in Australia is only 22 months,so the young people on our program do not even need to hold onto their device for 2 years in order to effectively double the lifespan of the device. If the device then breaks, we endeavour to repair it before providing a new (recycled) one. Our partnership with TGR is just one way in which we make a mindful and conscious effort towards a more sustainable community.
 Deloitte Access Economics, Mobile nation 2019 The 5G future Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association (February 2019).
Hello Initiative respectfully acknowledges the Noongar people as traditional owners of the land we work on.
We pay respect to their leaders past, present and emerging.
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