Idea: Free Stuff

Monday, May 18, 2009

Today, let’s delve into the idea of stuff. We need stuff. We want stuff. We want stuff we don’t need. Sometimes we realize that. Where does it go? Bingo…

When someone realizes they have something they don’t need, the first thought is generally one of a few options: Can I throw it out? Can I sell it? Can I give it away?

Unfortunately, not enough people ask themselves how much they need any given item BEFORE they acquire it. But, we can talk about that later.

The first question should be: Can I reuse this or use it for something else? Or, Can I give it to someone I know needs it? Failing that, it should be donated…to the free store!

Each year, we organize a Dump and Run on campus to account for all of the stuff that residence students (primarily first year university students) decide to chuck when they are moving out. We all know that you bring very little to residence, shop a bit too much during the year, and end up with so much stuff you can’t imagine fitting into your suitcases.

That’s where I come in. Collection of all these items. Let’s see what kinds of stuff we’ve found:

  • Food (non perishable) – The Food Bank on campus gets all of that. Awesome.

  • Food (opened or perishable) – Food Collectives (People’s Republic of Delicious) and people in need

  • Clothing – All shapes and sizes of clothing; old and new (with tags!), clean and dirty, cheap and expensive brands

  • Shoes – Shoes of all sorts in various conditions. Some of them are really broken and we don’t know what to do with them…

  • Bedding – We got a lot of pillows, which are pretty hard to donate. They make for good stuffing, so if you sew a lot, let me know! Otherwise we got blankets, sheets, duvets, etc

  • Dishes – TONS of dishes, and we have to wash them all. Yuck. It’s so worth it though!

  • Random – SO many things that make so little sense, we wonder where they came from…
    As if people throw out this much stuff…

Moral of the story? Think BEFORE you buy. But, if you end up with too much stuff, be creative! Think long and hard about what you can do with it to make sure it doesn’t end up in a landfill. We’ll update later on exactly HOW MUCH stuff would have been dumped.

-sarah jayne-

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