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What exactly is EcoVisio ”FreeShop”?
We call it the coolest, fairest and most eco-friendly bazar in Chișinău:
- It's cool because the things ”on sale” are donated by people, so they cover all sizes, styles and uses. They also come with a big sentimental and historical value, as they have witnessed the passing of time and the lives of their previous owner(s).
- It’s fair because all the transactions at the FreeShop are moneyless. In fact, there are no conditions whatsoever: you just take what you like, as long as you plan to use it. It’s not a swap system, nor does it require a donation. This makes it one of the few social contexts where everyone is equal in rights and possibilities to acquire products.
- It’s eco-friendly because it extends the life of objects which aren’t being used anymore, instead of having them end up in the trash. Plus, it’s a great alternative to supporting the fashion industry, whose impact on the environment is terrible.
In other words, anytime an EcoVisio FreeShop is coming up, you can tidy up your closets and drawers. Bring the things you don’t need or like to the event, where they will be offered for free to anyone who wants them. You can also come to the FreeShop if you want some new stuff on a budget, regardless if you bring anything or not. Everything left at the end of our FreeShops gets donated to various charity organizations.
EcoVisio FreeShop is mainly centered around clothing & accessories, since a lot of advertising and excessive shopping revolves around it. Progressively, we’ve started to open it up to other types of objects as well, such as cosmetic products and gifts.
A brief history of the EcoVisio FreeShop
EcoVisio’s Freeshop was started in September 2018 by Clara, our Communications Coordinator, as a small initiative within IarmarEco. Its popularity and high demand led it to becoming a recurring event, with 3 more following by the end of the year. We organized both indoors & outdoors editions, attracting the support of like-minded businesses and CSOs in Chișinău.
The first edition in 2019 was a special one, where people could bring their unwanted presents for others to adopt. This idea came as a response to the consumerism ingrained in the holiday season, but also to raise awareness on how we need to put more thought into the presents we give to people.
This particular FreeShop was a huge success, with around 100 people attending and many objects donated and adopted on the spot. It was a partnership between EcoVisio and several NGOs from Moldova and Germany, who knew and supported the initiative.
What’s next for the FreeShop
We will continue to organize FreeShops as a platform to bring people together and encourage recycling/reusage. Our goal is to engage even more people and communities from all regions and social backgrounds. A successful FreeShop to us is one where people from all walks of life are ‘shopping’ side by side, in a space where money is not necessary.
Want to get involved? Contact Clara and see how you can make the FreeShop better – , +373 60790514.
The EcoVisio FreeShop is made possible through the support of Sweden