This weekend sandwiches the major international events in consumerism – yesterday’s Black Friday and the upcoming Cyber Monday. Instead of joining the mass frenzy, Greenpeace is calling on people to #BuyNothing and #MakeSmthng instead.
On Black Friday, Greenpeace launched MAKE SMTHNG Week, which runs until 2 December, bring together hundreds of designers, artists and makers to lead workshops where people can learn creative techniques of reuse, repairing, fashion upcycling and DIY.
Events include making sustainable Christmas presents, living a plastic-free life, community repair cafes, books and clothes swaps, and zero waste cooking — in 32 countries from Qatar to Peru, Canada, India, Germany, Italy, UK, South Africa and Spain.
Greenpeace and its global partners — Fashion Revolution, #BreakFreeFromPlastic, Shareable, Arts Thread, the Fab Labs Network and the Fab City Global Initiative – will be hosting a total of 273 events in 38 countries.
Robin Perkins, Make SMTHNG campaigner at Greenpeace, said: “We are already drowning in stuff — stuffed wardrobes, garages, and kitchens – yet we keep on shopping for more fashion, gadgets, food, single-use plastic, toys, and cars. With our throwaway lifestyles we are fuelling climate change, pollution and the destruction of people’s homes and irreplaceable natural wonders. MAKE SMTHNG Week offers a fun and creative way out of this wasteful consumerism.
“Shopping does not make us happy. But being with friends and people, learning new skills, and valuing what we already have, does. So this Black Friday, buy nothing and make something! By sharing, caring, and repairing things we can make more of what we already own and give our beautiful planet a break.”
Every year Earth Overshoot Day marks the date when humanity would have used more from nature than then planet can renew in the entire year. In 2018, it fell on August 1.
The over-consumption of convenience products like fast-fashion, single use paper and plastics, gadgets or toys designed not to last, and industrially-produced food, is pushing our planet to its limits.
Robin Perkins added: “Large corporations continue to put profits first, while they reduce the quality, repairability and versatility of their products. Through omnipresent advertising we are told, again and again, to buy more and more stuff we don’t need. Companies won’t change unless we show them people want something different. Together we have to build something that will make this outdated, wasteful model obsolete.”
To find out about events happening in your area as part of MAKE SMTHNG Week, visit the dedicated website.
Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief @rosamedea