How to fight the war on waste in your home

Published: 04th July 2018

Plastic free July has put a spotlight on our plastic consumption. The fact Australians manage to generate 52 mega tonnes of rubbish every year is not something we can be proud of and, to make matters worse, we’re ranked number five when it comes to accumulating the most municipal waste. Well, what are we going to do about it?

Surely there are ways we can reduce these dreadful statistics? If you want to get really serious about how much rubbish we’re accumulating, it’s time to make some important changes in our homes.

Here are some simple things to do in your family home that won’t cause too much disruption to your life!  

Cut down on plastic use

If you find the idea of totally eliminating plastic from your family home too difficult (let’s face it, it isn’t easy) then make a commitment to cut right down. But where to start?

Toy libraries are a great way to reduce the plastic we buy for our kids. It works the same way as a regular library, except that you borrow toys, so they’re constantly recycled and when your kids are bored, you can swap for something new!

Experiences are an obvious alternative to giving toys (says the lady who’s made a business out of it)! The whole reason I started My Best Gift, was because my daughters had accumulated an entire toy box full of plastic at the ripe old ages of 3years 6months respectively. Experiences will give them more joy and be memorable, plastic toys end up in landfill. Preach.

Minimalists 30day challenge:

Try the Minimalists 30day challenge. Every day for 30days you get rid of something that you no longer need. It’s a good starting point and it’s something you could do as a whole family, encouraging the kids to go through their toy boxes during the challenge. While you’re at it, check out the kitchen and see what appliances you can live without and make sure you do a thorough de-clutter. Once you start living with less ‘stuff’ you’ll feel a lot more peaceful about your living space as well as feeling more organised.

Use the things you have

Stop buying more and more new things and keep using and recycling the things that are already in your house.

Get organised with your recycling.

Keep a recycling bin in the kitchen and clearly mark what’s supposed to go in the bin so the kids can help too.  You might even have some storage tubs in the house or outside that can be used specifically for recycling, even an enclosed washing basket will do the trick!

Get worms

Kids love worm farms. They’re slippery and slimy, exactly the way kids like them, so they’ll enjoy ‘feeding’ the worms all of your kitchen scraps. You can buy a basic set up at your local nursery and you’ll be surprised just how much it reduces your weekly waste. Just remember not to give them citrus, onions or meat – fussy eaters!

Stop ‘over-shopping’

Sure, it’s fine to keep your pantry well stocked but how many of us look in there and realise we have five tins of chopped tomatoes, three tins of chick peas and multiple packets of everything else you can think of! If you get really organised and make a shopping list of non-perishables once a month, you won’t keep re-buying the same things over and over again

Once you get into the habit of fighting the war on waste in your home, it will become second nature and it’s a great thing to teach your kids so they can bring those great habits into adulthood too!

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