News Flash


Posted on: February 25, 2019

Local Organizations Benefit from SWACO's Community Waste Reduction Grants

SWACO has awarded just over $178,000 in “Community Waste Reduction Grants” to fourteen organizations in Franklin County to implement waste reduction programs. Here’s a list of the organizations and a brief description of their programs:

Columbus Association for the Performing Arts (CAPA) will hire a consultant to conduct a waste minimization study and action plan to reduce waste and increase recycling at the Ohio Theatre which hosts more than 240 events annually and welcomes more than 300,000 patrons. 

Columbus City Schools received funding to implement a cafeteria food waste prevention, diversion and composting program in three elementary schools and one middle school. Maize (43224), Ecole Kenwood French Immersion (43220) and Devonshire elementary (43229) schools will employ outdoor tumblers as well as vermicomposting (the use of worms to compost materials). Columbus City Preparatory School for Girls (43205) will pilot a collection service to compost food waste from the cafeteria.

The city of Westerville will purchase new public space recycling containers for Uptown Westerville, the historic heart of the community. Funding will also support the development of new recycling signage for the containers that meets best management practices.  Uptown Westerville is home to more than 80 retail establishments.

The city of Worthington plans to pilot a residential food waste drop-off composting program. Participating residents will be provided a bucket to collect household food waste in and return it weekly to the Worthington Service Complex (380, Highland Ave., Worthington, OH 43085) to be swapped out for clean buckets.

Columbus Regional Airport Authority received funding to install two new refillable water bottle stations and new signage for recycling and waste disposal containers in the concourse. Signage will be aligned with best management practices.

Food Rescue US will use its grant to purchase reusable food containers for donor use. The reusable containers will decrease the amount of non-recyclable, disposal containers currently sent to the landfill and will help to facilitate the rescue of 100,000 meals every month which will be delivered to residents and families in need. The new containers will also assist Food Rescue US with extending their donor program to 20 new donors.

Furniture Bank of Central Ohio will apply its grant toward the purchase of a new 16-foot box truck to enable the diversion of more furniture from the landfill and into the homes of families who need it. The truck will divert up to 18,000 items from the Franklin County Sanitary Landfill each year and serve approximately 10,000 people, including 5,000 children.

Hilliard City Schools will purchase recycling containers for classrooms and common areas in the middle and high schools and in the central office. SWACO will also assist with the implementation of educational resources and signage for the containers.

Junior Achievement of Central Ohio plans to purchase new recycling bins and create accurate recycling signage.

The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission will hire a consultant to pilot a home-to-work composting program in which employees will be able to collect food waste generated at their homes and offices for composting. MORPC will also compost food they collect from meetings and events.

Ohio Health will provide the infrastructure needed to coordinate the first phase of a recycling program in public and non-clinical areas at Riverside Methodist Hospital.

Sunbury Urban Farm will use its grant funding to offer seven workshops and educational programs centered around Bokashi composting. Grant funds will be used to purchase composting supplies for the workshops.

The Department of Rehabilitation and Correction and Department of Youth Services will implement a new recycling program at their new offices on Fisher Road.

Windermere Elementary School in Upper Arlington will replace existing classroom recycling containers. In addition to new containers, SWACO will assist the school with improving recycling signage throughout the building so that students, faculty and staff recycle properly and more consistently.

Communities, schools and non-profits in Franklin County that are interested in learning more about the grant program, can visit

In 2018, SWACO awarded grants to 11 projects. Check out these videos that highlight four innovative projects from the 2018 grant cycle:

Hilliard City Schools
Franklinton Farms
Otterbein University 
Franklinton CycleWorks 

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