Gina Dempster, Wanaka Wastebusters
As with last week’s Green Collar Job Q&A with Simon from Wanaka Wastebusters we have not actually met Gina Dempster (also from Wanaka Wastebusters) but know that she is doing good green work. Gina looks after the communications for Wanaka Wastebusters, “pretty much anything that needs to be written is my responsibility” she says. That includes advertising, press releases, newsletters, leaflets and the website. “I work two days a week, and love the dynamic, unpredictable and energetic workplace here.” Before working at Wanaka Wastebusters, Gina was part of the media team for the Green Party in Parliament.
Here are her answers to our Green Collar Job Questions:
1. What do you do to live more sustainably (with a low impact) in your life?
I try not to throw too much out by recycling, composting, re-using things and fixing them up (although sewing is not my strong point so I have a whole basket of clothes waiting for mending day which never comes). I get satisfaction from finding the perfect second-hand object: old telephone poles to hold our deck up or a pair of nearly new ski pants for my sister. I grow most of our summer veggies and fruit, support local producers and avoid food packaging.
2. How do you live more sustainably at work?
At Wanaka Wastebusters our work is all about recycling, re-use and challenging people to think about what they really need. Our Green Christmas has been very popular over the last two years, encouraging people to give one-off gifts from our re-use shop. We have just insulated our office which means we get to take off our down jackets in the winter.
3. What do you think is the biggest environmental issue we need to deal with in Christchurch/New Zealand?
The current mode of thinking that resources are limitless.
4. What makes you smile?
Watching my four-year-old on his first ever powder run (he crashed all the way down).
5. What is your biggest pet peeve?
People who think they can’t make a difference, so it’s not worth trying.
6. What is your favourite colour and why?
Blue – because it’s the colour of the sky and the sea.
7. Do you have a favourite place in the world? Describe why?
Wanaka . I love seeing the mountains every day, especially against a clear sky at dusk.
8. What’s your connection to Sift?
Sift and Wanaka Wastebusters are working to minimise waste.
9. Do you remember your favourite teacher and why they were your favourite?
I think her name was Ms Gore, and she was my teacher in Std 2. I remember we studied medieval history and had a jousting tournament with newspaper swords. I got to be a knight and ride on two of my friends who were the horse – maybe they don’t remember that day so fondly.
10. What do you want to leave behind?
Happy kids (hopefully grown up by then). A world that values the earth.
11. What do you think the future will bring?
Sometimes I think chaos and darkness, but mostly I think communal strength and wiser ways of living.
12. Who is someone you really admire and why?
Barbara Kingsolver. For writing about things that matter.
13. What is happening outside your window right now?
It’s nearly dusk and the grey sky shows it’s that time when the temperature plummets. Time to go home and light the fire.
14. What is your favourite breakfast?
At the moment it’s scrambled eggs and gluten-free toast, or maybe some almonds and fruit.
15. What is the best piece of advice you can give us?
Once the wave forms, change happens quickly.
Lovely answers – thanks Gina. You can find more about Wanaka Wastebusters and the good work they are doing to reduce waste to landfill here.