Go Green & Make Others Happy
By David Stone|
Photo by Bernie Laframboise
FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO MAY NOT BE FAMILIAR with FreeCycle, according to Wikipedia: “The FreeCycle Network is a worldwide network of ‘gifting’ groups that divert reusable goods away from landfills. FreeCycle is a nonprofit organization registered in Arizona and as a charity in the United Kingdom. According to freecycle.org, it “is made up of 5,297 groups with 9,088,783 members around the world, and next door to you. Membership is free, and everything posted must be free, legal, and appropriate for all ages.”
The FreeCycle Network server and operating expenses are funded by corporate underwriters, on-site advertising, grants, and individual donations. Groups are run by volunteer moderators and members take part in the worldwide gifting movement that reduces waste, saves precious resources, and eases the burden on our landfills.
Local resident, attorney, and activist candidate Sherry Wells discovered FreeCycle about two years ago. Since that time, she has been one of the people involved in FerndaleFreeCycle@yahoogroups.com, our own special voice/participant in this global movement. As an example, Sherry wanted and received someone’s extra insulin pens for her diabetic cat. She then offered a store’s old greeting-card rack, which was taken by the manager of a nonprofit organization.
It is important to note that FreeCycle “is not about only giving to the poor, getting as much free stuff as we can, getting things to earn money on the side, getting rid of junk that would be better off in a landfill, posting a ‘wish-list’ for expensive items, a community bulletin board for finding rentals, dentists, mechanics, or advertising our businesses or special events.”
Instead, Wells points out that FreeCycle “is about keeping worthwhile items out of the landfill, giving away something that has no use in our life to someone who could extend its usefulness, giving gifts to people while clearing our clutter, creating, building, and sustaining an environmentally aware community.”
The general FreeCycle guidelines run as follows:
· Post in your local (home) group only.
· Do not cross post.
· Never post to groups outside of your immediate area.
· If you respond to an offered item, please pick it up when you say you will.
· No trading
· No money requests
· No alcohol
· No adult materials
· No coupon or ticket requests
· No firearms
· No requests for big-ticket items
So, if you are interested in leading a green lifestyle, think about including FerndaleFreeCycle@yahoogroups.com in your life. And you can learn more about the whole, global FreeCycle movement at freecycle.org where they are “changing the world one gift at a time.”