When they say, ‘money makes the world go round’, any other alternative seems like a David and Goliath battle to change how society works.
Yet more people are searching for pay systems that involve the exchange of talents or sharing and lending unwanted products.
Just last week, we reported on the Ubuntu movement who are creating a moneyless town with a framework known as ‘contributionism’ whereby residents pay for items using skills.
Today we are excited to bring you Buy Nothing, a project who pride themselves on offering people a way to give and receive through a gifting network where neighbours can swap goods to override the traditional buying, selling, and bartering model we currently use.
The motto is simple: ‘Buy nothing. Give freely. Share the bounty.’
Not only does the initiative promote a sense of community by bringing people together, it also hopes to save the planet with its ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’ philosophy at its core.
The brainchild of friends Liesl Clark and Rebecca Rockefeller, who kickstarted the mission on an island in the Salish Sea off the coast of Seattle, they are now rolling out their idea to others globally and have 2,000 groups around the world who have created a Buy Nothing programme.
While the rules are minimal, the co-founders request that people only join one group, local to them, so they can ‘give where you live’ as this is what truly builds community.
And once bitten by the gifting bug, you will be amazed at what people share.
Some of the incredible items include a beautiful, fully-decorated Christmas tree to a student who could not afford one, a wedding veil for a beautiful bride to complete her look, a stunning calligraphy set, and a garden seesaw for a woman’s grandchildren.
Speaking about their quest, Liesl and Rebecca said: “We saw this commitment to help people build trust within a group that was made up of their real-life neighbours.
“We saw people begin to understand that Buy Nothing groups are more about connections and trust between people than about the fast and anonymous transfer of free stuff.”
They explained: “The rules are simple: Post anything you’d like to give away, lend, or share amongst neighbours. Ask for anything you’d like to receive for free or borrow. Keep it legal. No hate speech. No buying or selling, no trades or bartering, we’re strictly a gift economy.”
In support Liesl and Rebecca’s values, mental health studies have proven that true happiness does not come from what we get, but from what we give.
To start gifting, click here: Buy Nothing.