New trustees aim to develop scrap materials charity

After a period of uncertainty, a Reepham-based charity that collects and stores scrap materials for community reuse has a new team of trustees.

Jim Elliott – before and after!

Mini-Scrapbox, based at Collers Way Industrial Estate, Wood Dalling Road, came about when Jim Elliott had a major mental breakdown in the 1990s.
After being told he would never get paid work again, friends at Ipswich Road United Reformed Church in Norwich backed Mr Elliott by becoming trustees of his new charity, after Norfolk County Council announced the closure of the former Scrapbox waste minimisation project at Trowse.
Now a group from the Aylsham group of Churches of England is in the process of having the responsibilities of running Mini-Scrapbox transferred to them and Mr Elliott is passing on his years of experience.
On 6 July, Mr Elliott and his hard-working, committed team of volunteers will have completed 21 years of service to this environmental and community benefit charity – Rose, Mick, Audrey, Stan, Diane and Peter to name just a few.
Some other stalwart supporters have died. Possibly the biggest achievement was William Smith, who did all the dirty, smelly work with Mr Elliott in running Community RePaint Norfolk.
“Without trustee support charities cannot function and we are indebted to all past trustees and the new ones,” said Mr Elliott.
The new group have embraced the charity aim and want to develop the charity further. “We wish them all the best and hope that Reepham and Norfolk will support them in sharing reusable goods for community benefit on an even larger scale,” he said.
Two part-time paid jobs are being created, so the charity will have to double its income to pay for them, particularly difficult in a time of austerity when grants and local authority support for existing projects are being reduced.
“This will be the biggest challenge, but with commitment and your continuing support it can be done,” said Mr Elliott. “Finally, for all those people who are bipolar like me, take heart that there can be some purpose in life.”
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