Fo­cus on Garfield

Warragul & Drouin Gazette - - FRONT PAGE -

An ini­tia­tive to re­duce plastic waste in In­ver­loch has seen the Garfield com­mu­nity take their lead, with boomerang bags to be avail­able in lo­cal busi­nesses from to­day.

Boomerang bags aim to pro­vide so­lu­tions to plastic pol­lu­tion and foster sus­tain­able be­haviour through grass­roots com­mu­nity en­gage­ment.

Vol­un­teers from all walks of life get to­gether to col­lect pre-loved fab­ric and turn it into reusable bags which are then cir­cu­lated into the wider com­mu­nity.

About half a dozen vol­un­teers have spent about three hours per week for the past month to get the project off the ground.

Project co­or­di­na­tor He­len Davey said a group of vol­un­teers got started about a month ago fol­low­ing a sug­ges­tion from a com­mu­nity mem­ber who had seen the ini­tia­tive in full swing in In­ver­loch.

“A lo­cal had picked up a bag at the IGA and we thought we’d give it a go,” she said.

“We started four weeks ago and we’ve done 100 bags so far.

“There’s been a lot hap­pen­ing be­hind the scenes with the craft group and an ex printer helps print the lo­gos.

“We’ve had peo­ple sew­ing and peo­ple iron­ing.

“Noth­ing is bought new and the Op Shop is pay­ing for the screen print. “They’re a high-qual­ity fash­ion ac­ces­sory.” The hard work has en­abled the con­cept to get off the ground this week, with boomerang bags avail­able in the post of­fice, butch­ers and chemist from to­day.

It is hoped the project will even­tu­ally ex­tend to the su­per­mar­ket in Bun­yip.

The bags will be avail­able to the com­mu­nity free of charge, but peo­ple are en­cour­aged to do­nate.

“It gets peo­ple talk­ing about the plastic bag prob­lem and we don’t want to be dis­cour­ag­ing peo­ple from us­ing it,” Ms Davey said.

“We have a do­na­tion box for char­ity and it has been de­cided to give the first lot to farmer re­lief.

“We en­cour­age peo­ple to re­turn them if they don’t want to use them any­more, share with some­one else or keep us­ing them.”

While the group still has enough ma­te­rial to keep them go­ing for a while, Ms Davey said any do­na­tions would be grate­fully re­ceived.

“We’ve still got a few rolls that will last us for a while, but we’re look­ing for cot­ton and ma­te­rial,” she said.

“We’re also look­ing for vol­un­teers to help make the bags.”

Any­one in­ter­ested in vol­un­teer­ing or as­sist­ing with do­na­tions can call into the Garfield Com­mu­nity Op Shop.

Launch­ing the boomerang bags are, at back John Pre­ston, front from left Mar­garet Dob­son, Cathy Hur­ford, Narai Jung, Leanne Lock and He­len Davey.The bags will be avail­able for use in se­lect Garfield busi­nesses to­day.

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