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Free, sustainable bags for Tumut community

The Boomerang Bags initiative started on the Gold Coast and has spread to nearly 150 communities across the world – now including Tumut.

A new initiative starting up in Tumut this month will see free, sustainable bags given out by local retailers for the community to use instead of plastic bags.

They’re called ‘Boomerang Bags,’ and are already used in 146 communities in eight countries.

Now, local residents Amanda Hobson and Donna Longobardi are bringing them to Tumut.

“Donna shared a video on Facebook and I saw it, and thought, you know what, we could do this in Tumut and she said why don’t we!” Amanda said.

“We’re going to have a couple of locations where people can come down the street and pick them up and go and use them, and then they can bring them back – the whole idea is to borrow and bring them back, or if you want to keep some you can bring some back.”

The bags are made out of materials that would otherwise have gone to landfill, like old doona covers, clothes, and other appropriate materials.

They will be made by the community for the community, with the first sewing bee to be held on March 18 and 19 in the Gundagai Room, Tumut Council Building.

Amanda said another benefit to the project is to meet new people and learn a new skill.

“It’s not only about the environmental stuff, it’s also about getting the community together,” she said.

“People who can sew can teach people who can’t, and you also build your general support networks up.

“The flow-on effects are huge, it’s a really exciting initiative. I can’t wait.

“It’s something different, something Tumut hasn’t done.”

The wider Boomerang Bags initiative was started by conservationists Tania Potts and Jordyn de Boer in Burleigh Heads.

They have so far made over 55,000 bags, replacing 27 million plastic bags that would have been used otherwise, and using 13,600 kilograms of materials that were previously destined for landfill, according to their website.

Those looking to get involved should message the Boomerang Bags Tumut Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/BoomerangBagsTumut/, or call Amanda Hobson at 0438 892 198.

They aim to launch on April 20.