Get on board Boomerang bandwagon

April 18, 2018

Neville Crowe, Rebecca Milne, Rowan Ratcliffe, Layla Ratcliffe, Caden Ratcliffe, Alena Ratcliffe, Eli Ratcliffe and Leeane Button at the first Boomerang Bags meeting.

The first kit received to begin Boomerang Bags in Tatura.

Tatura community members are stitching up a plan to make their town more sustainable.

A handful of keen, environmentally conscious locals began working together last week to reduce plastic bags around town.

Generations Op Shop manager Neville Crow, Tatura Community House manager Leeane Button and Tatura residents Alena Ratcliffe and Rebecca Milne individually reached out to sustainable bag group Boomerang Bags to get the initiative going in Tatura.

It wasn’t until they received a group email from Boomerang Bag founders Jordyn de Boer and Tania Potts that they realised all were working towards the same cause.

Boomerang Bags is an Australian not-for-profit working to reduce the use of plastic bags by engaging local communities in the making of shopping bags from recycled materials.

Volunteers from all walks of life get together to make re-usable bags that can be given away to family, friends, colleagues or strangers and continue to be passed on.

The aim of the bags is to create conversations and increase awareness around upcycling materials with a goal of changing society’s throw-away mentality.

The initiative kicked off in 2013 when Tania and Jordyn began their grassroots project within the community of Burleigh Heads.

Boomerang Bags are now in 610 communities across the globe, with more than 199600 bags made and 59880kg of waste diverted from landfill.

The group met for the first time on Wednesday, April 11, at Generations Op Shop on Hogan St.

‘‘The Op Shop has sponsored the initial materials and we’ve registered as a community group,’’ Mr Crow said.

‘‘So we’ve got all the gear— boomerangs, patches and material already.’’

Mr Crow is optimistic about the potential of this project.

‘‘This will really promote the town of Tatura because the bag could end up wherever,’’ he said.

Boomerang Bag users are encouraged to use the bags and drop them off in any communities involved.

‘‘We’ve got great volunteering community spirit here and I’m quietly confident this will take off,’’ Mr Crow said.

‘‘People are all aware plastic is a problem, so the culture has to change.

‘‘We can’t expect we’ll get plastic bags at every shop.’’

With the impending plastic bag cull at major supermarkets Coles and Woolworths, shoppers across the country will soon be faced with a challenge to change their habits.

IGA SUPA Fishers Tatura has also committed to the cause, pledging a ban on single-use disposable plastic bags on June 30, 2018.

To keep up with the impending changes, the group is work swiftly to get things co-ordinated.

Ms Button is in the middle of organising ‘Boomerang Thursdays’ at the Tatura Community House.

Boomerang Thursdays will be a fortnightly morning and evening session, where volunteers can help create the bags.

Volunteers are encouraged to get involved in various tasks, such as helping with the sewing, cutting the patterns and donating materials.

Tatura Community House is hosting an information session on Thursday, April 26, at 7pm, encouraging everyone to get on board with the initiative.

‘‘Already we have a group of people working together to make this happen, but more members are needed and very welcome,’’ Ms Button said.

Ms Ratcliffe and Ms Milne will be in town this week, encouraging local businesses to get on board and inspiring shoppers to use a Boomerang Bag, rather than a plastic one.

‘‘Get involved and make a difference to our community, our region, our world,’’ Ms Button said.

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