The American Dream is changing – finally. People all across the nation are realizing we don’t to keep up with the Jones’s – who needs all that stress? The new peer to peer sharing economy is making it easier to own less and live more. People are making money from what we own but don’t utilize all the time, renting items that are only needed occasionally, or sharing resources without a profit motive. If I can rent or borrow a truck, I don’t need to own it. If I can borrow a lawnmower, I don’t need the space to store it. If I can give away things I don’t need to others who can use them, I free myself up from the responsibility of storing, caring and organizing extraneous stuff in my life to pare down to more essential items for a simplified, de-cluttered life.
And its beginning to make head way in Central Oregon. It seems like everyone knows someone who rents out a room occasionally through AirBnB to supplement their income. A recent stuff swap, organized by friends on Facebook, encouraged people to de-clutter their lives and give stuff away to others who may make use of them before donating to local thrift stores. Clothing exchanges have also been happening here for a long time but Facebook makes it easier to quickly round up friends to exchange clothes. Sharing has been around a long time, but new peer to peer online sharing platforms are popping up all over the world, and while most of them are regionally based there are some that work no matter where you live.
Here are a few of my favorite sharing sites: online, old school, local, and international:
- Repair Cafe – Connecting broken items that need fixing with people who like to fix things for free. Next one is scheduled for Tuesday, April 2, 2019 at The Gear Fix!
- Central Oregon Seed Exchange – Give a get free local seeds to build resiliency in our local food system.
- Tool Lending Library – Here is an example in Portland, but this could easily happen here.
- DIY cave – a maker space will be a community hub of all things DIY, with community access to tools for metal work, wood working, electronics and more.
- SkillShare – Experts share skills through online video tutorials for a fee. Learn what you want, when you want!
- Neighborgoods – Post items to lend to others in your neighborhood, and post items you are looking for. There are about 25 local folks signed up so the infrastructure is there, but it works best if other locals are signed up, so sign up today!
- Streetbank – Similar to Neighborgoods but with a clearer layout, this needs locals signed up in order to really work.
More sharing resources:
Obviously you don’t need online apps for everything sharing related…so what are some ways you like to share?