project leader
Lynne S
219 Loyola Avenue
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the project

Check out our new video!

New Orleans Compost NOW! from ioby on Vimeo.


We are a residential food waste collection project based in New Orleans. Modelled after a successful program that I started and ran at Queens Library (see video above), we have already collected nearly 3,000 pounds in our first ten weeks at just two locations -- but we want to expand to even more sites!

We partner with the New Orleans Public Library to offer this free service, since libraries are all about reuse and resource sharing. Libraries are convenient locations used by everyone, across all demographics and ages.

We partner with Schmelly's Dirt Farm to pick up the waste and turn it into nutrient-rich compost it at local urban farms.

We host collections every Saturday from 10:30-noon at Rosa Keller Library in Broadmoor and 2-4pm at Alvar Library in the Bywater.

We would like to expand to two additional sites, adding a weekday daytime and evening drop-off option. We've identified two additional sites -- the Children's Resource Library in the Lower Garden District (5-7pm) and the Friends of the Library Carriage House Bookshop (12-2pm) to host collections every Wednesday.

Based on current rates of participation -- and we are growing each week as the word spreads about the program --  the addition of these two sites could mean collecting nearly 800 pounds a week by the summer.

Our ultimate goal is to build a network of community composters in every neighborhood in New Orleans.  Collectively, we can divert tons of food waste from the landfill each month.


the steps

Once we  have secured enough funding, we will

1) Purchase new bins for each new Wednesday site and additional bins, as needed, for Saturday locations

2) Expand our contract with Schmelly's Dirt Farm to add a weekly pick up of food waste at the two additional sites

3) Promote the food waste collection program and new drop-off sites via flyers, email newtorks, social media, Facebook ads and -- of course - word of mouth.

4) Look for additional staff to host the collections, to answer questions from passer-by and from composters

5) Collect food waste!

6) Work with Schmelly's and local urban farms and gardens to compost the food waste we deliver

7) Host at least one free educational program at the library about DIY composting, including vermiculture (I bring a traveling worm bin to show the kids most weeks)


why we're doing it

New Orleans is a foodie town, long celebrating "locally sourced" food. Our growing green movement has seen a huge increase in solar panels and bike lanes post-Katrina, but basic recycling services have still not yet returned in full. A pilot glass recycling project in the French Quarter recently failed.

While there are many people working towards a municipal composting program, I knew from experience that the community did not need to wait!

I approached the New Orleans Public Library about hosting free, weekly food waste collections based on a successful program is still going at Queens Library. For every question or concern: I had an answer, and a proven track record of success.

Not everyone has the time or interest in maintaining their own compost bin, and many renters have no access to outdoor space. This project allows everyone the opportunity to easily divert their food waste from the landfill.






Disbursed budget (6.22.17):

RAISED = $1,531.00
less ioby Platform Fee  $35.00
less ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee (5%) $69.26
less ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $41.56

Original budget:

BINS: $540

8 18-gallon lidded bins @ $12.50 each plus tax

6 35-gallon wheeled bins @ $65 each plus tax


Schmelly's picks up filled bins from and delivers back empty bins to each site, each week

$25/week for ten weeks (Spring) = $250

$25/week for fifteen weeks (Fall) = $375

Ten weeks, two times a week, two sites a day = 40 shifts @ $50/ shift
(includes set up, hosting, break down)


$100/month Facebook Ads x 3 months = $300
Printing costs (flyers, posters) = $175

Project Subtotal =  $3,640
ioby Platform Fee  $35
ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee (5%) $182
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $109
Total to Raise on ioby = $3,966


Thank you to our donors!

We successfully held weekly collections at four library sites throughout the Spring, diverting over 10,000 pounds of food waste from the landfill since our launch in January and facilitating over 1,000 drop-offs of food waste from local residents. 
We will be hosting just two sites in the hot summer months of July & August before resuming in September at FIVE sites (adding Mid City Library to the roster). 
We also officially decided on a name: Compost NOW (New Orleans Waste) and set up a Compost NOW Facebook page: which has hundreds of followers. 
Our program has been covered in both the major daily newspapers in New Orleans, and even the head of the Department of Sanitation brings her food scraps to Alvar Library:
We are planning a small conference on November 4th at the Mid City Library, to try to pull together everyone working on composting in our region.


This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


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