A) Community RePaint schemes collect unwanted, surplus and leftover paint from Paint Manufacturers, DIY Retailers, Painters & Decorators, Waste Contractors and Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRC), and re-distribute it to individuals, families, communities and charities in need, to improve the wellbeing of people and the appearance of places across the UK.
A) There are 75 Community RePaint schemes across the UK, plus one in Dublin.
A) Each scheme is an autonomous organisation that is either a ‘stand alone’ Community RePaint scheme, or part of an organisation that also reuses other materials – furniture, wood, children’s scrapstore reusing business waste - with some schemes being run by a local authority at a HWRC.
Each scheme signs a service level agreement to join the Community RePaint Network which is managed by Resource Futures (an environmental consultancy), and the network is sponsored by Dulux.
A) The reused paint is distributed by a Community RePaint scheme to a whole range of community groups, sports clubs, amateur theatre groups, arts groups, housing associations (for their tenants) and low income families and individuals.
Most schemes will make a small charge of up to £2 per litre, which contributes towards the scheme becoming sustainable.
A) Community RePaint schemes only collect domestic paint that has been manufactured for general, household painting tasks. No “chemical” or hazardous paints are collected. This is so that workers at Community RePaint schemes are not exposed to undue hazards e.g. skin or respiratory irritants. There are also complex rules and regulations for the handling and storage of hazardous materials by Community RePaint schemes.
A) In most circumstances Community RePaint schemes will not be able to collect paint from your home. Please contact your local scheme directly for more information.
A) No! Donated paint is generally kept in its original container to be taken away by customers and not mixed or blended. Occasionally, some schemes may “bulk up” certain paints of the same type and manufacturer in order to save storage space. They may also, very occasionally, mix the odd tin of paint to make up a desired colour (but do not expect a full mixing service).
A) Yes. Some Community RePaint schemes collect “half” or partially full containers of surplus paint from members of the public at specified donation points, but they will not normally accept containers approximately less than a third full. Therefore, containers which only contain a little bit of paint should be disposed of at a Household Waste Recycling Centre (HWRC) that can accept liquid wastes. Find out more information from your local authority.
A) When paint is put in a wheelie bin, it can cause considerable damage and mess to waste collection facilities and so this should be avoided at all cost. Only, if the paint is completely dried up is it acceptable to place it in a bin.
If the paint is still liquid, reusable and the container is more than a third full check to see if there is a Community RePaint donation facility in your area where the paint can be donated for reuse. Otherwise, unwanted paint can usually be taken to a Household Waste Recycling Centre (HWRC) or some Local Authorities will collect paint, from private households. For more information on these facilities, contact your local authority.
Paint should never be poured directly into a sink or down the drain or sewer.
A) The majority of Community RePaint schemes are run by not-for-profit organisations and community groups. Therefore, the presence of a Community RePaint scheme in your area is dependent on there being a local organisation which wishes to run a scheme or a willing Local Authority.
If you are part of an organisation or group which would like to run a Community RePaint scheme in your area, please contact Community RePaint.
Alternatively, if you would like your local authority to consider setting up a scheme in your area, you can write to them using the Community RPaint letter template.
A) If there is not a Community RePaint scheme nearby, consider whether you can donate the paint for reuse to a local community group, charity, local probation service (they may be able to use it for community refurbishment projects undertaken by offenders), youth or church group, art college, amateur dramatic society, sports club, neighbour, work colleague, relative or friend. For larger quantities of reasonable quality paint you could also consider advertising it on Freecycle or Freegle.
If you are unable to find someone else who can reuse the paint, disposal may be your final option. For disposal options, please see the answer above.
A) Resource Futures is working hard to extend the number of Community RePaint schemes. Unfortunately, at present, the network does not cover all areas of the UK. If you are not close to one of our schemes, you might try contacting DIY retailers such as Homebase, Wickes or Wilkinsons or local decorating suppliers as they may have end-of-line or damaged tins of paint to donate. Some supermarkets also sell paint and may have surplus paint available as might Laura Ashley and Next stores which sell paint.
A) If you don’t have a car, try asking a friend, relative, neighbour or work colleague to assist you in taking paint to a donation point. Unfortunately, Community RePaint schemes often have limited funds and staff time so are unable to carry out collections from private households. (If you have quite a large amount of paint to donate, your local project may be able to consider a one-off collection and you should contact them directly to discuss this).