- Student Team "Cling" Produces Upcycled Reusable Bags Using Discarded Banners on Campus February 07, 2023
Distributed as a souvenir for GEEF 2023, contributing to the resolution of resources on campus
A Yonsei University student team "Cling" distributed reusable bags that upcycled campus banners to be discarded at the "5th Global Engagement & Empowerment Forum on Sustainable Development (GEEF 2023)" held on February 2 and 3.
Cling is a team of students from Yonsei University who are working intending to contribute to solving the problem of resource circulation on our campus. More than 200 banners have been reborn as 1,000 reusable bags in the wake of a project by students who felt problematic about the fact that all banners used on the campus are being incinerated.
A large number of banners are hung on the campus when various school events such as Akaraka and Yon-Ko Games are held. Some banners are reused in case of regular events, but most of the banners that have been hung on campus so far have been discarded after being used as a one-off.
This is not only a reckless waste of resources, but it also adversely affects the environment. Banners are mostly burned or buried in the ground when they do their job as a one-time event. When a banner that is made of chemical fiber fabric is burned, first-class carcinogens such as dioxin and microplastics spread into the air along with carbon dioxide. Even if buried in the ground, it does not rot and is immortalized with harmful substances.
Cling suggested "upcycling" as a solution to the problem of school banners being discarded. "Upcycling" means adding new value to discarded products to make them usable again.
Cling proposed the production of "reusable bags" to be distributed as a GEEF 2023 souvenir, as upcycling waste banners to create unnecessary products leads to another waste of resources. The Institute for Global Engagement and Empowerment (IGEE) and the GEEF Organizing Committee, also agreed with students that replacing the souvenir reusable bags produced for the GEEF every year with the reusable bags made by recycling school resources would be in line with the purpose of the forum. So the project was carried out in cooperation with the team Cling and other Yonsei University institutions.
The practical difficulty of producing reusable bags with a limited time and budget could be overcome with the cooperation of the company “119REO.” 119REO is a social company that makes bags and accessories using fire-fighting equipment such as fire suits and fire hoses and donates part of the proceeds from product sales to fire organizations. CEO Lee Seung-woo of 119REO directly participated as a sponsor for GEEF.
As a result, the texture and design of the bag made of banner material may be unfamiliar to many, but reusable bags with different designs were born.
CEO Lee of 119REO said, "119REO is a brand that makes our daily lives courageous," adding, "I am happy to be with the theme of GEEF 2023's "Turning Point: From Crisis Into Opportunity." I would appreciate it if those who participate in this event could use souvenirs and courage to turn the crisis into an opportunity," he said.
"We dare to help solve social problems through cooperation through Professor In Han Song's "Convergence Teamwork for Social Problem Solving" class, and we received scholarships and gained the momentum to realize our ideas through the workstation of the Institute for Higher Education Innovation (IHEI)," the members of Kling said, "We hope that the reusable bags we distributed this time will be used for a long time and contribute to zero-waste practices and attaining the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)."
Yonsei University is making all-out efforts to strengthen the university's social responsibility by fostering "innovative leaders with a community spirit" under the core values of engagement, innovation, and excellence. This case of collecting and upcycling banners on the campus is expected to serve as an opportunity for Yonsei to continue to develop interest and efforts to contribute to a sustainable future as a leading university of SDGs.