Sarah Howcroft, centre, receives the award at the OutDoor show

Sarah Howcroft, centre, receives the award at the OutDoor show

A scheme that collects unwanted outdoor gear for re-use by deserving groups has gained recognition at a major trade show.

Judges at the OutDoor show in Germany chose the Gift Your Gear system for one of only nine gold awards.

The scheme’s founder Sarah Howcroft said she was very pleased to receive the award on behalf of Gift Your Gear.

She said: “The OutDoor Industry Gold Award to Gift Your Gear is a wonderful recognition of the importance and value of ‘reuse’ to the industry.

“Gift Your Gear has provided unwanted outdoor clothing and equipment to over 350 UK community organisations, youth groups and charities working with young people in the UK outdoors.

“Recondition such as this helps in the general understanding of the real benefits reuse can bring to the outdoor industry.

“A big thank you to everyone who has supported Gift Your Gear and donated so generously.”

Judges at the show in Friedrichshafen, which is one of the biggest in Europe, said Gift Your Gear had the potential to become a worldwide movement.

“Reusing old products is extremely good for the environment and more sustainable that recycling,” they said. The panel felt that the concept could lead to a real change in behaviour. The donated outdoor clothing and equipment is given to community organisations, youth groups and charities working with young people in the outdoors. It is hoped that this will inspire future generations to get outdoors and do more to look after the environment.

Ms Howcroft announced that Gift Your Gear would again be teaming up with retailer Rohan, which she also co-founded 43 years ago, as a collection point for reusable clothing and equipment.

She said: “Unwanted outdoor clothing and rucksacks can be donated to Gift Your Gear at any Rohan shop throughout the month of September.”

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