Recently a local lady started up a Buy Nothing Facebook group for our area. I was pretty pleased and quick to jump onboard. There is one in our neighbouring town of Gawler, but I was out of the boundary limits to join it and didn't really feel up to starting one for my area, despite the suggestion. I'm not a big fan of lots of rules and the sheer amount of them put me off. With someone else running the group I can choose to work within the rules I'm comfortable with, then just not interact in the areas I don't agree with, leaving the lady who's happy being admin to jump through the hoops they want to place.
Don't get me wrong, all the people I've encountered in these groups are lovely and that's great. Because it's local, most of them know one another through varying degrees of separation, so you feel comfortable in having them drop by to pick things up, whereas Freecycle can feel a bit dodgy. I think it takes a certain sort of moral standpoint to agree with the ideals of this sort of group.
This is the ideal place to donate no longest needed items to someone you know will be likely to use them, rather than dumping them at the charity shops and hoping they will get a new lease of life rather than being binned. It's also the place to offer and ask for things that may normally be viewed as waste, rather than resource, because its up to each individual as to what they count as waste.
It's a small group at the moment, but slowly growing. I've managed to get landscaping rocks to do work on terracing my front. The lady who provided them is going to be having an extension built and these rocks would have be carted away when the work started anyway. I've found a new lease of life for some silica, arch support insoles which were bought for my daughters and then barely used. They could be easily disinfected, so it seemed ridiculous to throw them out and they've gone to someone in much more need of them.
My daughters are fond of candles, particularly scented ones, and wax melts, so when someone a few streets away offered some up, they were so excited to go and collect them. Some were used, but they're only going to be used some more here anyway.
I've been able to share excess plants from those which spread over time, such as aloe and mint. Many people have trees which can produce more than you can manage to use at harvest time, so it's a great way to share the excess. Being local also means that besides getting things without paying money, you will likely use less emissions going to collect it. Often you could walk or cycle to these other houses.
We have so much stuff that could be circulating around and being used, rather than being binned while someone down the street may go out to buy the very thing you just got rid of. So I love this concept, despite all the rules. I'd recommended seeing if there's one in your region and even looking at starting one if there isn't and you’re happy to admin one. It's a brilliant way to combat consumerism and reduce traveling and a great frugal resource.
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