Plastic Bags are on the way out in New Zealand, maybe

new_world_bagIt’s exciting times for the no plastic bags campaign, in the last few weeks there has been some great progress made from the business, community and government sectors.

Business: The Warehouse announced they would charge 10c per plastic bag and give the profits to community groups.

Community: Wanaka Wastebusters made a splash with the launch of their Get Real campaign.

Government: Mayor Bob Harvey of Waitakere is showing what can be done when a Council leads the way.

That’s the good news, the bad news is that without your help things will stop here – Progressives and Foodstuffs will continue with more token gestures and the Government will decide the problem isn’t worth worrying about. Luckily, there’s more good news, if we each put in just a little bit of time over the next few months we will be able to fix this problem once and for all.

Ever heard the line “Make a difference with just 5 minutes, fill in this form and email your friends to…” – I sure have, I may even have used it myself a few times. Here’s a secret, it’s sort of true but not really.

Sometimes it’s true, but often the petitions die a lonely death of obscurity – not because people don’t support them but because people don’t know they are there. Maybe the issue isn’t sexy enough (I’ve tried drawing pictures on plastic bags but it just looked weird), maybe powerful people oppose it or maybe something else happens that day and it is bumped from the news coverage.

So I’m not going to ask you for minutes, I’m going to ask you for hours. Not many, just a couple here and there, but full hours where all your skill, passion and intensity is focused on drastically reducing the number of plastic bags in New Zealand.

It’s completely up to you what part of the campaign you work on, after all, no one knows your skills and interests better than you do but if you’re looking for ideas here are a few.

Recruiters
Individual invitations work the best but emailing a group or giving a presentation is great too (feel free to use or modify these slides if you like http://www.slideshare.net/joshuavial/no-plastic-bags).

Comms and Buzz
Press releases, blog posts, facebook and twitter – our story needs to be told loud and often.

Regional Coordinators
We are planning a National Day of Action and we need people around the country to help pull together teams who can participate on the day.

Digital hosts and matchmakers
We will have lots of people joining the campaign and asking how they can help – we need people to welcome them and help match skills with tasks.

So come visit our campaign centre and introduce yourself, it would be wonderful to have you on board.

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