Why Not Try Buying Nothing for a Day?
Can you remember the last day when you didn’t buy a thing? No coffee on the way to work, no impulsive chocolate bar or magazine from those tempting shelves by the checkouts in the supermarkets? No? Well, you’re not alone.
But some people are fighting back and are having a ‘Buy Nothing Day’ on 24th November, as a protest against the consumerism behind our throwaway society, that is essentially harming our planet.
Where did Buy Nothing Day start?
It was founded in Vancouver in Canada by an artist called Ted Dave in 1992. It is usually celebrated on the Friday after Thanksgiving, which is also what we are coming to know as Black Friday in the UK. The point of the day was to protest and reflect on the rampant consumerism that happens not just on this day, but all year round. Now, a similar day exists in the United States, the United Kingdom, Israel, Austria, Germany, New Zealand, Japan, the Netherlands, France, and Norway, and the focus is on not just changing your spending habits for one day, but on consuming less and creating less waste.
How to celebrate Buy Nothing Day
There are so many things you can do for free. Think about the natural beauty we are surrounded by. Take a walk in a local park, and make your own packed lunch to take. And yes, it is getting cold, so a flask of homemade tea or coffee might come in handy too!
Instead of buying food or getting caught by impulse buys at lunchtime, take your own lunch to work, and make your evening meal from leftovers or things you already have in your store cupboard or fridge. You’ll be surprised how little you really have to buy, and how much we buy just because we’re conditioned to.
Furniture Re-Use Network
The Furniture Re-use Network is a charity that represents around 200 furniture reuse organisations in the UK. Their mission is that no one should be without a bed to sleep on, a cooker to cook on, or a sofa to sit on, wherever they live. Their message is that second-hand is not second best, and that furniture reuse charities provide furniture and essential services to people who are really in need. Not only this, they want to emphasise how reusing items can reduce waste and benefit the environment.
Furniture reuse, the figures
- Last year, more than 1.5 million people accessed affordable furniture thanks to furniture reuse organisations.
- People on low incomes managed to save £436 million on household goods thanks to furniture reuse schemes.
- Last year, almost 3.5 million pieces of furniture and electrical equipment were reused in the UK.
- There are around 250 organisations that are involved in furniture reuse in the UK.
- Furniture reuse organisations are usually charities or social enterprises that help the people most in need by providing them with second-hand furniture and volunteering opportunities.
The Furniture Re-Use Network’s ‘Buy Nothing New Day’
The network is launching their version of Buy Nothing Day, and are encouraging people to buy things from their local charity shop on the 24th November.