July 11th 2017
To celebrate Plastic Free July we have put together a list of five groups in Ireland that can help you cut plastic out of your life. From re-using goods to simple advice, these groups are invaluable sources of information and also lots of fun to be a part of!
1. Zero Waste Ireland
Zero Waste Ireland is a fast growing community as members find it increasingly helpful in getting advice on reducing plastic consumption. They have a very active Facebook group with over 6,000 members across Ireland, and it is here that you will find practical advice from other members about any query you may have. They organise zero-waste events around the country, with previous events including a talk from zero-waste guru Bea Johnson. And they were heavily involved in the organisation of Ireland’s first-ever zero waste festival which was held last month.
Reducing waste also includes reusing that which you already have. WeShare is a sharing community. One of the aims of this community is to reduce your environmental impact by sharing any goods you only use for a short time. Sharing comes in all forms whether it’s furniture, jam jars or old toys, or your own time and resources you’d like to share by helping someone in the garden or to build a website. There is an emphasis on community, and much of the fun is in attending their monthly meet ups, getting to know each other, and engaging in gift circles where each person gives what they have and asks for what they’d like. So far they have active communities in Dublin City and Trim, Co.Meath. They have a starter pack available for anyone who would like to set up a branch in their own locality. Check them out on their website or Facebook page.
3. Freetrade Ireland
The aim of FreeTrade is simple: to facilitate the reuse of household and business items throughout Ireland and in doing so promoting reuse and waste prevention. This works through the online exchange of goods. If you have household items that you would like to see go to a good home or are looking for something new for your house then this is the place to go. Because the emphasis is on reusing goods and reducing impact, all items are free.
VOICE was established in 1997 and was responsible for much lobbying to introduce the plastic bag tax which has seen millions of plastic bags saved from use and landfill. Today they focus on waste and water concerns and are pushing for zero-waste initiatives. They are a great source for advice from a personal to a political level. Their free newsletter will also keep you up to date on environmental matters from around the country.
ReCreate diverts unwanted and end of line materials away from landfill and distributes them for creative use. You can purchase a yearly membership and help yourself to a huge and eclectic variety of materials, from yarn and bottlecaps to fruit crates and rolls of insulation. They cater for schools and large scale projects as well as individuals. They are a crafters dream and all in the spirit of reuse!
These are only some of the many groups out there. There is a huge interest in reducing our waste and our impact on the earth, so if you know of any other groups working towards this goal we’d love to hear about them in the comments below.