More giving than taking
Koha is the gift that keeps on giving, according to two women who have started a free goods exchange in Waitangirua.
Paula MacEwan and Jasmine Taankink started the Porirua Koha Shed on Facebook in August, and within a fortnight had enough response to open a real shed where people can give and take freely according to need.
‘‘ It’s just very quickly grown into a bigger thing,’’ Ms MacEwan says.
Beds, TVs, pianos, clothes, books and toys can all be found at the shed. There is no limit on how much people can take, but there is just as much flowing in as out, Ms MacEwan says.
‘‘There’s a human effect – when someone takes a box of stuff, they feel obligated to bring back seven.
‘‘It’s a beautiful thing, the act of giving.’’
The pair accept any reasons for people visiting the shed – even if they on-sell what they take.
‘‘It doesn’t matter where it goes, as long as it’s helping someone,’’ Ms MacEwan says.
The casual nature of the shed will appeal to people in need, Ms Taankink says.
‘‘ That’s the difference between this and some other helpful agencies – there’s no forms and no rules about how much you can have. If someone has a newborn baby and they want to take all the newborn baby clothes, that’s OK.’’
Ms Taankink says the shed is all about the community sharing resources and saving perfectly good possessions from the tip.
Give and take: Porirua Koha Shed managers Paula MacEwan and Jasmine Taankink say more is given to the goods exchange than is taken away by those in need.