Wednesday, April 7, 2010

NE Family Household Goods Library...coming soon!

Nurture will soon be opening a household goods library, thanks to a generous grant award from the City of Portland's Planning and Sustainability Portland Recycles! Grant Program! Also thank you to Dre Davey at Swap-n-Play for her mentorship in getting our library seed planted and sprouted.

What is a household goods library?
Good question! Inspired by Swap-n-Play’s North Portland Preserve and Serve as well as the local Tool Libraries, we have been gathering equipment and supplies to create a sister Household Goods Library for NE Portland neighborhoods .

To start, our Household Goods Library will have:
  • A Serve Collection: 100 place settings (dishes, bowls, cups, forks, spoons, knives, cloth napkins, etc.), which can be checked out when you have a party or large function to encourage you to forgo using disposables.
  • 10 food dehydrators,
  • 2 steam juicers,
  • 8 canning kits (4 pressure canners and 4 waterbath canners + utensils),
  • food preservation books.
  • Our e-village Feeding the Family forum is designed to provide a space for recipe exchange, nutritional information, green living practices, and a place to provide education about preserving and sharing resources.
  • We will also be offering at least two classes per year on food preservation.
We hope to expand our inventory, in and out of the kitchen-related supplies, through donations and other funding sources. If you would like to donate an appliance, gadget, book, or other related item that is in good working condition, please let us know ( Items on our wish list include:
  • sewing machines
  • large mixers
  • food processors
  • bread machines
  • ice cream makers
  • small spinning wheel and hand spindles
  • table top looms

How will it work?
We are creating an on-line system for reserving the equipment. This will be located on our website when the library is opened. (We will post an announcement!) Members (more info. coming soon) of Nurture, Community Partners (more info coming soon), and local non-profits will be able to access the library at no cost.

NE Portland community members are welcome to use the
library with a sliding scale fee of $5-30 or 1-5 Timedollars. You will be required to register with the library prior to borrowing.

Accepted donations of equipment will allow free access to the library for 5 years. The fees will help us to maintain the equipment and further our inventory, and we hope to eliminate all fees eventually. Upon return of the equipment, you will be asked (via e-mail) to fill out a simple questionnaire to help us quantify the waste prevention benefits the library is fulfilling.

More information about accessing the library will be available on our website when the library opens, but you can peek at Preserve and Serve's Borrowing Rules to get an idea (although we will have slightly different rules, you will get the picture).

Why do we need a household good library?
To paraphrase Dre's beautiful explanation: By offering this resource to the community, we will be significantly reducing the amount of paper plates and cups, plastic cutlery, and disposable napkins that end up in our landfills. We anticipate that approximately 100 NE Portland households will access the library per year. With 100 place settings in the Serve Collection, we estimate that 2 events per week will be covered. That equals 5200 less disposable cups, plates, cutlery settings, and napkins in our landfills each year.

As more households learn to preserve food and have access to needed equipment, fewer cans, jars, and plastic containers will be disposed of because canning jars can be reused year after year and dehydrated foods and juices from the juicers can be stored in reusable containers and bottles.

And sharing is good for you, our community, and our fabulous planet!

Thank you City of Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability!

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