Bringing Recycling and Upcycling into a shopping centre

OMA (Oppegård Environment and Labor Center) established a pop-up store in a vacant premise at Kolbotn Torg in the beginning of May to focus on environment and reuse. The agreement between the centre and the municipal-run recycling shop was signed at last year's Voluntary Exchange, an annual event where the business community, voluntary organizations and municipal services meet to discuss and enter into cooperation agreements. OMA is a mix between a recycled goods store and a place where you can hand in goods to be sold second-hand or for upcycling. During their stay at Kolbotn they sold a large amount of fine recycled goods. Both our customers and stores have handed in used goods that OMA upcycles and sells forward. OMA also held auctions, which have been quite popular, as is seen in the photo .

OMA operates daily in an industrial area, a five-minute drive from our centre. Here they have a large second-hand shop where Oppegård's inhabitants can donate clothes, books, furniture, sports equipment and other items for sale. The shop serves as a working practice for people who have for some reason fallen out of ordinary work life. They get to learn how to prepare the shop, including pricing and displaying the goods. Some of the work practice attendees have since been employed in other stores at Kolbotn Torg. Unfortunately, OMA, are now packing their things and moving out of our centre as the pop-up period has come to an end.

Centre manager Marianne Thoresen-Larsen at Kolbotn Torg says OMA has generated only positive feedback.

“We have only received positive feedback for OMA coming to Kolbotn Torg. The store has an important task and it has been a great pleasure to have them here.”

When it comes to the question of making this a permanent feature in Kolbotn Torg, Marianne Thoresen-Larsen is quite optimistic.

“We have got a lot of positive feedback about OMA, and I see there is a lot of interest for reuse and recycling in Oppegård. This was initially a pop-up shop, but we have a strong desire to continue for a longer time at some point,” she says.

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