5. Get schooled — Let’s face it, most schools are usually desperate for supplies, whether it’s office goods or things they can use for craft projects. Check with your local schools or visit DonorsChoose, where teachers can post lists of items they need for certain projects. Sometimes it helps when parents pool their efforts, so if there’s a newsletter for your kids’ school, sign up. If there isn’t, start one.
6. Work with groups that already exist — If you belong to a church or social club or service organization, use that built-in audience to find a way to start a re-use project. Maybe you can have collection boxes for winter coats at your church or a pot exchange at your garden club. This also works for certain businesses with a social element — one of my local coffee shops has a very active paperback swap box where customers can take or drop off books for free.
7. Hold a reuse fair — Really want to inspire re-use in your community? Organize a swap meet. Set up a few tables and get a group of people to bring a bunch of perfectly good items that others can take home for free or for trade.
8. Be a re-use role model – Peer pressure, when used correctly, can be a powerful tool. Stand up as an example of ways that things can be reused. Bring reusable cloth bags with you when you shopping. Leave your old magazines in doctors’ offices (cut your address off, but make it obvious that another client dropped them off). Start craft projects made from recycled goods (like your old VHS tapes). Have fun with it,and show other people what they can do with just a little bit of effort.