Giving value to rubbish!

The third Seaside Scavenge took place at the Rye Pier in January 2018. We conducted a large scale beach cleanup where the litter participants collect was traded for a festival currency. This was used to purchase high quality pre-loved clothes, toys, shoes and more that had been donated by the local community. Food and drink vendors enriched the buying market this year through sponsoring the event with tokens that participants could also purchase using their hard earned litter currency.

The event offered live music from local artists, educational talks from guest speakers, interactive stalls from local coastal/marine, recycling and conservation themed organisations, as well as workshops on how to create useful items out of everyday “waste”. We also provided a bicycle generated amplifier to invite the community to ride alongside our performers and use their energy to power the live music.

Sticking to our zero waste policy and education theme we hosted a Mug Library where participants could rent cups, plates and cutlery for their food, as well as a do it yourself Clean-Up Station to wash, dry and return the used items.

By turning a clean-up into a festival the Seaside Scavenge attracts a wider demographic of participants rather than engaging the converted. We have the opportunity to educate our participants about Tangaroa Blue’s Australian Marine Debris Database and encourage individuals to record litter according to this method. Our volunteers find it very rewarding that the data collected on the day may be used as a resource and reference in future reporting and development of litter mitigation strategies.

Every year the momentum of this festival grows and the event becomes a showcase and meeting place of zero-waste community pioneers, not only from Rye but from the peninsula and wider Melbourne area. People involved in the festival agree that this event has been an inspiration and source for many community initiatives and provides a valuable platform to recruit, re-energise and reinvent source reduction movements on the Mornington Peninsula. We are currently looking for keen Scavengers to jump on board with the organisation, so please get in touch with Sacha Guggenheimer if that might be you.

Seaside Scavenge is inspiring communities across Australia to turn their trash into something better, so head to their website to find out more or see if there’s one happening near you!

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