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circular economy Tag

Declutter dormant goods – the gift of isolation

With many of us spending more time at home recently, the chance to declutter your dormant goods may be one gift of isolation. This week we delve into the benefits of clearing out your ‘clutter’ and how to do so in a way that delights someone else’s life.

Decluttering is the term given to literally removing clutter from your space, whether that be your home, workplace or other area you frequent often. Synonymous with ‘spring cleaning’, decluttering involves sorting through the items you own to determine what is still valued and useful, and what is no longer needed or wanted. 

Declutter Clothes
Give your clothes a second life!

If you’re now working from home, it may be in your best interest to rid your space of extra mess. Psychologists have suggested that there’s an intrinsic link between clutter and one’s mental health. Research on the subject implies that more clutter leads to higher stress levels and that its presence can lead to unproductive behaviour and an unfocused mind! 

Decluttering has recently experienced a resurgence like no other. Marie Kondo’s best-selling book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, captivated readers with its new take on home organisation. Its popularity was spurred on by the successful spin-off Netflix show, Tidying Up With Marie Kondo. If you’re unfamiliar with Marie Kondo, her ‘KonMari’ method of tidying taps into the spiritual connection one has with the clutter they own. Her belief is that one should only possess belongings that inspire a happy sensation or are associated with wonderful memories. If a possession of yours doesn’t ‘spark joy’ then it isn’t worth holding on to.

Easy ways to start decluttering

Her other tidying tips are easy ways to make a start on your decluttering mission…

  • Need storage? Don’t purchase storage containers without knowing exactly what you’re using them for – make use of the boxes you already have at home.
    • A great way to mindfully reduce the amount of plastic you’re buying too!
  • Get rid of loose paperwork – they’re not needed in the digital age. Important papers can be photographed or scanned into your computer.
    • Make sure all your papers go into the recycling bin to help our environment!
  • Make note of what’s in your pantry – only keep what you will use and enjoy.
    • With all the cooking at home this is especially important! If your food items are unopened and still in date, consider donating them to a service like Foodbank!
  • Ensure everything has its ‘place’ in your space.
    • This will help to prevent loose clutter and any future messes from occurring!

Yas and dormant goods
Yas with an eclectic mix of dormant goods given a new lease on life!

Here to help with dormant goods

Once you’ve been through a decluttering process, there’s always that final stage of ensuring your clutter actually leaves your home and your car!! If you’re unsure what to do with your dormant goods or where to take them, we’re here to help! World’s Biggest Garage Sale has now moved to a brand new warehouse The Depot, Rivermakers, conveniently located at Morningside.  We are offering a contactless declutter drive-thru drop-off point for all of your dormant goods. Say goodbye to clutter and feel good knowing that your items will delight someone else, as we give your items a new home and lease on life.

Declutter drive-thru
Declutter drive-thru!

For more details on dropping off your dormant goods, feel free to contact us via our website!

Resource Recovery a big success at Retail Rescue: Watch this Makerspace

On the 14th of March, we hosted Brisbane’s first-ever Resource Recovery circular economy pop-up sale ‘Retail Rescue’. It was a brilliant day, with some bargains snapped up, some laughs had and stock (recovered resources) re-activated into the economy!! Stock that otherwise would have lain dormant in warehouses or may have suffered a less than ideal fate, ending up in landfill.

Being leaders in landfill diversion, resource recovery and the circular economy in Brisbane, we had a few businesses reach out to us to help them ensure that the stock they have on hand found a second life and made an impact. Our team and our community of supporters spent time sorting through brand new returned items, slightly damaged stock and second hand furniture. We then reviewed, renewed, repaired and repurposed these goods, in preparation for our warehouse open day ‘Retail Rescue’. Our Resource Recovery section of the warehouse saw unusable and less than ideal stock being separated into parts, some of which were used to salvage and repair other items with minor imperfections. Finally, after the usable parts were recovered, our leftover resource streams were carefully separated and sent off to be recycled or repurposed into new products. 


Resource Recovery in action by the WBGS Team


This was an exciting project for the team, as it presented us with a huge opportunity to reframe what was once considered unsaleable stock into viable and wanted products. To have been able to present it to the wider community, making it accessible for people to shop consciously and reasonably, made it even more worthwhile. The response and feedback from the community on the impact for the planet and their wallets was phenomenal, with repeat customers and supporters from our regular Garage Sale, our second hand sale that we host yearly, and our first circular economy shoe boutique pop-up, If The Shoe Fits, returning to shop circular and score some bargains. We were also honored to welcome the Assistant Minister for Waste Reduction and Environmental Management, the Honorable Trevor Evans MP. Our friends at Channel 7, also popped-in to share the incredible sustainable bargains on the nightly news. 


Retail Rescue: Brisbane's first Resource Recovery warehouse sale.


There is a sustainable and circular movement happening in Brisbane and we are so proud to be involved in making this happen. In the book Becoming by Michelle Obama, she writes about a speech that Barack delivers in which he talks about creating change in which he says:


Barack Obama quote from Michelle Obama's book, Becoming.


At the World’s Biggest Garage Sale, we see a world where Circular Shopping Precincts are as big as Westfield Centres, with Makerspaces built into the model and Resource Recovery at the heart. A world where people can come to not only shop circular, but also to learn and get involved. We see a world where jobs are created and opportunities are available for everyone, especially the vulnerable and those who are living on the margins. We see a space that is inclusive and tolerant, that empowers people with skills that help them grow, both on a personal and professional level. 

The best part of all of this is that we not only believe in this world, but we are doing ‘the doing’ to make this a reality. We are working towards a better world where People, Planet and Purpose are at the heart of everything we do. In line with this, we have just moved into a new and bigger warehouse space, where we are currently building our makerspace, soon to be teeming with action once we can all move freely again.


If you know of or work for a business that has stock that is sitting dormant or otherwise would go into landfill, please get in contact with the team. If you have have a trade under your belt or are handy with tools or a sewing machine and like to get involved in our makerspace, reach out. Let’s all work together for a more circular world.

www.wbgs.com.au

info@wbgs.com.au

The original conservation and sustainability leaders and do-ers.

I would like to begin this post by acknowledging the Yugerra people, the traditional Custodians of the land on which I’m writing to you from today, and pay my respects to their Elders past, present and emerging. I also would like to acknowledge that this land holds practices and knowledge which were implemented for thousands of generations before me.

The 26th of January is a controversial day in Australians’ calendars. It’s a National day that was chosen based on the arrival of captain Arthur Phillip and his fleet in 1788 to the shores of the Eora Nation, starting a colony and claiming “discovery” of the land. To some, it’s a day to celebrate nationalism and show patriotism over a BBQ and some beers. To others, the significance of this day is deeper than that. It’s a reminder of colonialism, of invasion of the settlement on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander’s land that lead to a painful reminder of the mistreatment and violence against indigenous people.

Source: Dennis Nona  | Mal lag Ar Apark AW Whural Ar Idal (State 1)

As a Lebanese Australian who has migrated to this beautiful land 12 years ago, it is hard for me to identify with either. However, I choose to celebrate all Australians while paying respect to the people that came before, the traditional owners of the land, the people who respected and used it in sustainable ways. It has been genetically proven through various studies that the Australian Aboriginal population is one of the oldest continuous living cultures in the world. I think that is something to be celebrated and one of the most interesting facts that I like to share with people when asked about Australia. The reason they earned this title is due to their practices and culture, I don’t think they could have done it without respect to the land and sustainably working with it, rather than using it as a finite resource.

A Yuingin [You·in·gin; meaning friend in the Yugara language spoken in the Brisbane area west to Ipswich and the Lockyer Valley, but understood in the Greater Brisbane area of Yugerra] of mine lent me a book last year called Dark Emu by Bruce Pascoe, which blew my mind. Bruce Pascoe unpicks the settler’s diaries and refutes the idea of the belief that Aboriginal culture was a Hunter/Gatherer lifestyle, an idea perpetuated by the settlers created through their rose-coloured superiority lense. He suggests, through their journals and diaries, concepts of agriculture and land management. These glimpses into pre-colonial Australia are vital in understanding true Australian history and proving that indeed Indigenous Australians were the original fishers, farmers, bread makers, scientists and engineers. Pascoe starts by exploring agricultural practices and animal farming. There are references and stories of planting, husbandry, harvesting and storage. References to rainwater capturing systems. Evidence of animal capturing techniques that ensured a meal but did not obstruct migration and ensured continuity of the species were also revealed. There was evidence of storage spaces of food and preservation techniques, which rendered toxic foods edible and prolonged the life of others. Controlled fires within bush areas and agricultural lands for regeneration and management were also evident in the settler’s journals.

 

 

Source: Doris Gingingara – Emu and Bush Turkey

 

Dark Emu is beautifully grouped into sections, from agriculture and aquaculture to housing and controlled burning, all the way to language and law. I won’t spoil it any further because it is a fascinating read and you’ll just find yourself devouring the book, chapter after chapter, with the thirst to erase your preconceived notions about Australian history and Indigineous culture and re-build your knowledge with an undeniable truth that has been hidden for a long time. Before I stop talking about the book though, I would like to share a couple of quotes with you which resonated with me, from chapter seven “The Australian Agricultural Revolution”, as I feel there are two principles by which we should all be living, Continuance and Respect, two values which are at the heart of all sustainability practices.

 

The life of the clan was devoted to continuance” 

and

There was an underlying conservatism in this approach, a concern for people they might never meet, and a respect for the prey species embedded in the spiritual and cultural fibre.” 

 

Source: Jorna Newberry – Waru Tjukurrpa (Fire Dreaming)

 

With all the fires, floods and hail storms that have struck our beautiful country recently, destroying our land and ecology, I can’t help but wonder what it would have been like if we still lived in a world where Indigeneous cultures were not only celebrated, but were guiding us on how we use our resources and work with our land.

 

Today, I’m lifting a SOBAH beer (Australia’s first non-alcoholic craft beer, Aboriginal owned and led) to the people who came before us, the original implementers of sustainable practices, the first farmers, scientists, astronomers, geologists, ecologists and engineers, the Indigineous people of Australia.

 

Become an ally! Ask, research, make an effort.

Find below some recommendations and links I have discovered on my journey of educating myself and writing this blog.

 

 

By: Wassim Sayegh

 

Picture Credits: Japinka Aboriginal Art Online Gallery

Pictures as they appear in the post:
  1. Doris Gingingara - Emu and Bush Turkey
  2. Dennis Nona  | Mal lag Ar Apark AW Whural Ar Idal (State 1)
  3. Jorna Newberry - Waru Tjukurrpa (Fire Dreaming)

Volunteer for an Inclusive Future

“The diverse and dynamic role of volunteerism in promoting the Sustainable Development Goals merits strong support from Governments and other stakeholders. On this International Day, I thank volunteers for their efforts to leave no one behind.” UN Secretary-General António Guterres

World’s Biggest Garage Sale wholeheartedly agree with the sentiment expressed by UN Secretary-General António Guterres. We fully support the pursuit of equality — including inclusion — through volunteerism, highlighting United Nations SDG 10, with the theme for #IVD2019 being “Volunteer for an inclusive future”.

Our recent venture ‘If The Shoe Fits’ in at the Brisbane Wintergarden simply would not have been possible without the generous support of volunteers who believe in our mission and give of their time freely in pursuit of a better world. We want to take time today to honour their contribution and to express our gratitude for their efforts.

Volunteering provides opportunities for people, particularly those often excluded/marginalised, to play a constructive role in their communities building confidence. We recently held a Queen of Shoes event to include the LGBTQ community of Brisbane and provide an inclusive space for them to shop for shoes. When asked about one of his favourite moments in-store, WBGS super volunteer Wassim, said:

“I had a great moment in the recent venture at If The Shoe Fits, where one of our amazing return customers came up to me and said “Thank you so much! I have never felt confident or safe to shop for shoes. Thank you for having this space.” I was in tears because it doesn’t take much to be kind and inclusive. This goes to show the heart and realness of what is being done here beyond the shoes, the money and the environment. It’s not a coincidence the logo is a Heart, it’s the core of all this business’ values.

We welcome everyone at World’s Biggest Garage Sale. Our company’s practices echo the thoughts of the United Nations who say “Through volunteerism, communities around the world often experience strengthened solidarity and inclusion”, and we welcome everyone at World’s Biggest Garage Sale events. Our inclusive community provides a role and safe space for everyone.

Why Volunteer?

  • Help the Environment: volunteering with WBGS absolutely helps to better your community and the environment through landfill diversion, creation of the #circulareconomy and raising much needed funds for causes.
  • Improve your Wellbeing: It also helps to better you as an individual. Volunteering is a free way to feel good about yourself and build confidence in skills outside of your normal work. The best part is that you get to share that positivity to fellow volunteers and develop new friendships and a sense of connectedness.
  • Reduce Stress: It’s a great way to reduce stress that may come from work or other relationships.
  • Build Hard & Soft Skills: You can build hard skills and experience in an area you would like to move into. And volunteer tasks will involve working with a diverse mix of people, giving you a chance to improve teamwork & communication skills, so you can gel better with others. You’ll inevitably run into various roadblocks at some point allowing you to hone your problem-solving and creative-thinking skills.
  • Fill-in Employment Gaps: If you’re in between gigs, a great way to stay engaged and proactive is to volunteer at WBGS. There are brilliant opportunities for networking and who knows, a volunteer stint with us could lead you to your next job!!

To all the volunteers out there, thank-you for your hard work, the laughs, the mucking-in, the solidarity and for making WBGS the special organisation that is. If you’d like to volunteer with us at Brisbane’s first circular economy Pop-up, we still have slots available at If The Shoe Fits and several events planned for 2020 — you can volunteer here! Have a fantastic International Volutneer’s Day and here’s to many more great events together in 2020!!

#volunteer4inclusion #IVD2019

Retail’s new disruptor? The resale market!

We’ve known it was coming for a long time! Watch out fast fashion, second-hand clothing is about to overtake you.

According to Scott Galloway New York University business professor and renowned tech pundit, “The new disrupter in retail, the new gangster that’s going to create hundreds of billions in shareholder value is the second-hand resale market.” And who’s driving it? Young people according to Mr Galloway.

Resale statistics

The predicted growth of the secondhand fashion market versus fast fashion. Source: Section4

Yas with one of the first shoppers at If the Shoe Fits

Yas with one of our first shoppers!!

And this concurs with other research we’ve been finding. The resale apparel industry is growing 21x faster than the standard retail apparel industry (thredUP) and millennials are cashing in. 61% of millennials sold something in the last year, compared to 54% of Gen X and 51% of baby boomers. The number of people selling second hand clothing, homewares, games and toys and electronic goods has doubled since 2011 (Gumtree, SHE report), with clothing, shoes and accessories now the most popular items to sell.

Further research from the US indicates that the second-hand clothing market will grow from $US24 billion ($35.5 billion) in the US in 2018, to $US64 billion by 2028. While fast fashion will continue to grow it won’t be at the same rate – from $US35 billion to $US44 billion in 2028.

Now is the time for businesses to be innovating and providing options for consumers to buy second-hand products. In a survey by Amplify talking to 2000 Australians aged 18 to 30, “1 in 3 felt passionately about the environment and sustainability, demonstrating they are actively trying to tackle this problem.”

34% also believe brands should be leading the way when it comes to saving the Planet, with 4 out of 10 want the brands they buy to make the world better and almost the same want the brands they buy to reflect their values.

If the Shoe Fits Popup StoreAnd given the success of ‘If The Shoe Fits’, Brisbane’s first Circular Economy Pop-up, in the heart of Brisbane’s CBD at the Wintergarden this Brisbane Fashion Month the research appears to match resale market demand!

Drop in and visit our friendly team at shop 14 in the Brisbane Wintergarden  for the new circular economy way of shopping – putting your money towards people, planet and purpose!