As an organisation that cares about the world, we are always after ways to create a positive impact: on both our immediate and wider community, and on the planet and its environment. Being based in an Ethical Property building is a great starting point for the latter and we top it up with fairtrade, local and organic food and products wherever we can. We also recently joined the Green Arts Initiative thanks to James, our newly appointed Green Champion! From all of this, it was a short step to organising our very first TMP Swap Shop – to the extent of wondering why it hasn’t occurred to us before.
As part of the research about running a swap shop, we called the local experts: the Swap and Reuse Hub (SHRUB), who spearhead the No Waste movement in Edinburgh. Their advice combined with some thought on what would work for us gave rise to our own TMP model which we tried on one cold February night.
We had both staff and members attend and while the number of people was relatively small (and some got the date wrong and missed it by days), the excitement at the event from those who did come was enormous! Things which were brought filled four tables, and included a fully functional climbing rope and an entire box set of business start up guides. Quite a few things were taken in return, too, and a few leftover books are now displayed in our TMP book case.
The best swaps of the night included:
- Gilbert checking out the only pair of trousers on offer and finding that they were his size
- Julie bringing and sorting through her entire jewellery box, with many items given away
- Miles adopting Claire’s beloved, red down jacket that has travelled the world
- … and lots of plant seedlings and cuttings finding a new home!
We’ve had requests to hold another swap shop as well as feedback on how to make the next one even better, so stay tuned. In the meantime, pop by our space for a chat about plants or a browse through our restocked bookshelf. Oh, and you can join as a member and become part of our thriving community, too!