Orinoco is a charity who’s mission is to banish boredom and save the planet using creativity and play to inspire the reuse of materials.
Over its 25 year history, Orinoco has saved lorry loads of interesting resources from ending up in landfill. They collect suitable waste materials from businesses for potential reuse, including usable garden and workshop tools, small electrical items for repair.
The Orinoco Scrap store sells scrap items for art, crafts, play and creative projects as well as new art materials, refurbished tools and DIY stuff. The Oxford store used to be based in Wood Green but they had to move out last year and have just moved to new premises. They will be having a Book event on Saturday 5th February as a ‘soft launch’ ahead of their full relaunch on Saturday 19th February.
This week we will be putting book shelves together and organising the books. Next Wednesday evening we will organise the store, price up stock and put more shelving up.
As always with indoor tasks, please wear a mask.
If you would like to run together to Orinoco meet at Richard Benson Hall, 276 Cowley Rd at 6pm. It’s about 1.25 miles to Orinoco. If you would prefer to meet at the location meet us at Templars Square, Pound Way, Oxford, OX4 3XH at 6:15pm. (Will update exact location before the session.)
In a dark, dark city,
There was a dark, dark road,
And off that dark, dark road,
There was a dark, dark path,
And along that dark, dark path,
There was a dark, dark school,
And a dark, dark brook,
And a dark, dark nature reserve,
And dark, dark allotments.
And all of them were blighted by litter,
Blowing in from the dark, dark path.
It was certainly a dark, dark, cold, cold night for litter picking last night!
It was well worth wrapping up warm, donning our hi-vis and head torches and patrolling the paths and cycle ways of Boundary Brook area to clear up the litter and fly-tipping. It's a litter grot spot just where you wouldn't want one (I mean, we don't want them anywhere, but this is particularly bad) - by two primary schools, edging a waterway and a nature reserve, and one of the worst areas is right outside the Children's Allotment.
We filled a couple of dozen litter bags with masks, cans, newspapers, takeaway cartons, and all the usual litter suspects. More surprising were the lengths of carpet, kitchen sink and assorted other flytipping!
Welcome to GoodGym Megan!
Last night we blitzed the tidying and organising tasks at the Oxford Mutual Aid food bank. As a 7-days-a-week operation there's rarely time to pause and take stock due to the overwhelming need to get the food parcels prepared, so a GoodGym flash-mob every now and then helps to get everything back in order.
This week there have been lots of large donations in from other food banks and larders which needed sorting into crates of similar items then stored properly. Also, now that we're into the New Year all the leftover Christmas items needed to be organised so that they can be stored off site instead of taking up precious space in the hall.
We divided into teams and got to work:
* Lorenzo headed up a group sorting through all the recent food donations, crating them up with like-items and stacking them away in a more organised fashion.
* Rachael took her team to the kitchen to sort through the fresh fruit and veg and dispose of any that were too mushy/mouldy to send out, organising the fridges into expiry-date order, and giving the whole area a good clean, before moving on to portioning up bulk bags of pasta.
* Bethan's crew sorted through mountains of Christmas gifts, categorising by age of recipient, and then picking a few crates to remain at the hall as birthday gifts and labelling everything else up for off-site storage.
* Holly, Vicky and Ben did the heavy lifting, re-organising the tin-can corner to make more storage space. Hope your arm muscles aren't too achey this morning!
* Last, but not least, Dan tackled cardboard mountain, flattening the pile of boxes and crushing as many as possible into the recycling bin.
We've already had effusive thanks from the Oxford Mutual Aid organising team:
"This is is so, so helpful! Thank you thank you!"
"Thank you SO SO MUCH"
"I've just been in and everything looks like a dream."
Great work team. Well done!
New Year, New Wednesday delivery list at Oxford Mutual Aid.
In the last week OMA has managed to move a couple of dozen households off the waiting list for regular food deliveries, which is fantastic news! That has meant a bit of reorganisation of when people receive their parcels, so our packing list has changed a little in the last 2 weeks. In addition to that they now have extra delivery help from Pedal and Post, meaning that more parcels can get delivered earlier in the day. All of this means that although there were more emergency food parcels than usual to prepare (23 in total yesterday), we didn't have quite as much food preparation to do overall as we would usually on a Wednesday afternoon.
We finished up all the parcel prep, and then were able to get a head start on the sorting and organising jobs which we'd got in mind for our evening shift. It was really helpful to have time to get a system going before the larger group arrived, as there was a huge amount to get organised thanks to large deliveries from other food banks throughout the earlier part of the week. Most of the shifts at the food bank are so busy preparing food parcels that they can't find time for the unpacking and organinsing tasks, so it was really valuable to be able to get that done.
Team work = dream work
Tonight we'll be litter picking around the circumference of Florence Park and along the Boundary Brook cycle path. There is always a lot of litter around this area which spills into the surrounding park, nature reserve and allotments. Tonight we'll do our best to sort that out.
We know you love a good plog - one of our most satisfying tasks - let's get to work!
Litter pickers and bags will be provided but please bring your own gloves. As the evenings are dark please wear hi-vis if you have them, and headtorches would be helpful for everyone. I'll bring a couple of spare head torches.
* Anyone wishing to run to the task as a group please meet in the car park of the Richard Benson Hall, 276b Cowley Rd at 6pm. There won’t be a bag drop available but we can use the toilets. It is less than a mile to run to the litter pick location, and we plan on there being a walking option too. We can take a longer route back so that you feel like you've had a good leg-stretch!
* If you would prefer to meet at the task please meet us at 6:15pm outside Larkrise Primary School on Boundary Brook Road, OX4 4AN
Oxford Mutual Aid have asked for a GoodGym flash mob at the Richard Benson Hall food bank tonight.
There’s lots to do:
* Portioning out bulk bags of rice, pasta, and chickpeas.
* Restocking the food shelves.
* Sorting through the fresh food and throwing out food waste.
* Breaking down cardboard boxes.
* Helping load up food parcels for delivery.
We ask that you wear a mask inside the food bank.
Tonight we will meet at the task - Richard Benson Hall, 276b Cowley Rd - at 6pm. It’s next door to St Mary & St John church. There won’t be a run to the task but there will be a 5k run after we finish at the food bank. We’ll also provide a run-walk option for those starting Couch-2-5k this month. All welcome, so come in your running kit if you fancy a social run.
We will have 2 tasks tonight. This is the early shift at Oxford Mutual Aid, and there will also be a task for the larger group (also at the food bank) starting at 6pm. It would be possible to do both if you want a full evening of GoodGyming.
We will be based inside Richard Benson Hall preparing food parcels in the food bank and helping the delivery drivers load them into their cars. We will do some restocking of the shelves too if there's time.
Please wear a mask. Anwen will be at the hall from about 4pm, so feel free to turn up any time between 4pm and 4:30pm.
Thanks for the pics and tips about refill shops in Oxford and Abingdon!
Lorenzo found Wild Honey in Summertown has refills for soap and cleaning solutions in addition to the regular refill haunts at Flo's and East Oxford Market. Bethan got some cleaning solutions from the refill station in Abingdon. Ben Managed to grab some dry goods at OxUnboxed before it closed for Christmas earlier in the week, with many of their student volunteers going home for Christmas.
This evening four confused Goodgymers realised that a degree in engineering would be handy when covering boxes with Christmas paper.
**How much paper?? Where to fold?? Where to stick?? Why is there a flappy bit left over??
We DID manage to wrap boxes though, which were gratefully received by Christine at Project Shoebox. They will now be filled with goodies and distributed to refugees and shelters around Oxford.
Good work team!