I want to introduce you all to a friend of mine here in Austin named Brian Boitmann. He is the founder and “chief sharer” of “Acts of Sharing“, an online sharing tool to help you and your friends reduce waste and save money! (There’s a LOT more to it than that, so I encourage you to visit www.actsofsharing.com to learn more !) Brian lives here in Austin, and is a UT graduate with big dreams for the Kingdom. We sat at a coffee shop while he shared the vision for AOS with me. He has dreams of seeing people all over the country and world collaborating to share their possessions with one another in an effort to model Biblical principles – after all “there’s enough for everyone’s need, but not for everyone’s greed”! Basically, you create a profile at AOS, build a collection of the things you own, begin lending them to friends you trust/those in your “circles”/community, and borrowing things you may also need. This might be DVD’s or books that sit on your shelf, a lawnmower that your neighbor needs while he waits for his to get fixed, or for all of us parents out there – BABY stuff that sits in your attic because your kids have gotten older! Something like AOS would work perfectly among faith communities, missional communities, and simple churches! One of my favorite functions of the site is that it shows how much $$$ you have saved yourself, as well as money your friends have saved by borrowing things instead of going out to purchase them. After all, why should the same book be on the shelf of you, and several/all of your friends!?
A great example of this is when we lived in Las Vegas. Morgan and I were getting ready to go backpacking with some friends to the beautiful Havasupai Indian Village. We started buying gear from REI when we realized that a neighbor already owned several items we needed. So, he let us borrow his sleeping bags and pads. A little while later he was going backpacking and was able to use some of the gear we had purchased! It saved each of us hundreds of dollars! I just wish we had AOS when we lived in Vegas! Who knows how much $$$ we would have saved ourselves and others!?
AOS was launched in Austin, as well as DFW, and possibly some others. Contact Brian today if you think something like this would benefit you and your city!