Once every couple of years I do an article on Freecycle.org (established in 2003)- like this one I did on Narrative.org : https://www.narrative.org/post/the-freecycle-network-tm – and while I know that not everyone who tries to use this service has had a stellar experience, those bad experiences are the result of other users, not the service itself.
Their mission: “Freecycle aims to keep items out of landfills by providing an internet listings service to help people give unwanted items to someone else for free in their own community. Keeping stuff out of landfills helps build a sustainable future, is good for the environment and builds local and world communities.”
Since researching it again for my Narrative article, I noticed that the City I recently moved to had a post saying they were looking for moderators. I am currently a moderator-in-training for the Moreno Valley group. If you browse the groups available, you will find that there are groups all over the United States and all over the world from Albania to Zimbabwe.
When you join one (or more) of the groups, the Moderator will send you a welcome email with all the rules and how-to’s. Very simple, and easy to use – if you have something you no longer need that is clean and safe – you can post it as an “Offer” if you need something – you can post it as a “Wanted”.
The rules specify the no-nos and they make perfect sense for safety and liability reasons. And the Moderators job is to make sure that those simple rules are adhered to, and to help publicize the service.
I support anything that keeps usable items out of the trash – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle – and this is one of the ways we can all do that, while helping others.
A quick suggestion to you, gentle reader: If you know of a non-profit that looks for donations of goods (for example: old towels for animal rescues) – share Freecycle.org with them. It is one more way for them to get their message out and ask for the items they need.