The City of Winnipeg and Winnipeg Harvest are joining forces to put old recycling bins to good use.
The city and the non-profit organization have scheduled three dates to collect the old bins.
Containers which are still usable will be picked up by Winnipeg Harvest, while unusable ones will be recycled by the city.
Winnipeg Harvest will use the old containers in a multitude of ways, including as emergency food hampers and warehouse storage. It will also be using them for its springtime Blue Box Gardening program, which aims to teach basic gardening and self-sufficiency skills to young visitors to Winnipeg Harvest.
"They’re taught how to grow a garden in a blue box. It’s all about connecting youth to the earth... making sure the youth know where their food comes from, and that Winnipeg Harvest is a food-secure building," said Chris Albi, communications co-ordinator for Winnipeg Harvest.
Albi said the partnership was formed after automated recycling bins were delivered to Winnipeg homes earlier this year and it was determined most blue boxes were not going to be used by homeowners.
"We partnered together and decided it was a good idea for the public, because there’s going to be about a third of the public who will want to get rid of them," Albi said.
The first of the three collection days took place Nov. 10 at Winnipeg Harvest’s Winnipeg Avenue location. The remaining collection dates are Sat., Nov. 17 at 1539 Waverley St. and Sat., Nov. 24 at the parking lot opposite 849 Ravelston Ave. W.
Winnipeg Harvest is also encouraging residents to drop off a "tin with the bin" when they bring their old blue bins to the sites.
Albi said that with approximately 64,000 people to feed each month, the agency will take as many bins as it can get.
"There’s lots of things we can use them for," she said.