A popular township in central Victoria is taking a stand to ban the plastic bag by establishing easy alternative solutions to help locals and tourist make better choices.
Through the activism of a small community led Plastic Bag Free Daylesford committee, this well known town in the Hepburn Shire is doing their bit to stop the free distribution of single use plastic bags. It is the start to move towards the committee's vision to stop the use of all single use plastics such as water bottles, straws and take-away containers.
A big part of being successful at changing the behaviours of the community is by engaging them, educating them and establishing an environment that supports the new behaviours. As outlined in this video, the committee is doing that by gaining the support of the local council, businesses, community groups and the locals. The committee’s education program is providing learning opportunities through:
- Free screening of films such as the recent screening of A Plastic Ocean
- Social media campaigns
- Attending community events
- Speaking at events
- Holding seminars like ‘Living without Plastic Bags’ at the local Neighbourhood House Centre
- Supporting local schools with resources for the children to learn why we need to ban the bag
- Signage reminding shoppers to bring their reusable bags
The next steps to engage the community is to hold regular community reusable bag sewing days, bringing people together to share a laugh and support one another in a task that will help others make better choices.
These better choices are supported through the Boomerang Bag campaign. As outlined in the video, the Boomerang Bag boxes are at our large retailers - Coles and Tonna’s Fruit & Vegetables. These boxes have reusable bags in them, made by the local community. Shoppers are encouraged to bring their reusable bags with them but if they forget, they can borrow a Boomerang Bag and return it/them next time they go shopping.
Change can take some time but so far the Daylesford community is really showing great signs of supporting the campaign. The challenge now is maintaining the momentum whilst we continue to lobby the state government to legislate the ban. This needs to happen sooner rather than later when Australia alone uses 5 billion plastic bags per year. Bags are used on average for 12 minutes and then disposed of. Only 3% are recycled leaving the rest causing great damage in both landfill and as litter.
Get behind this great campaign and help contribute to the solution of a what is a global problem.