We rely on grants and donations so need your help for us to continue our work and keep prices affordable for our Borrowers... This is an ALL-OR-NOTHING Crowdfunding campaign. If we don’t reach our target - we don't get anything at all, and your pledge will be refunded by crowdfunder.co.uk. It's a risky move but it's the best way to prove we have your support.
To get more of Plymouth Borrowing, we have reduced our memberships to one time only prices and have bonus credit up for grabs in our rewards and treats from local businesses!
By pledging, you will help us unlock vital match-funding. If we reach 25% of our target, Plymouth City Council will take a look and potentially match-fund your donations! There are also other match-funding opportunities which will help us reach our target and with any luck stretch target, allowing us to do even more for our City! We need you to show them how much you LOVE your Library of Things and help us continue what we do!
A Library of Things (LoT) is somewhere you can borrow all the 'things' you need from without the clutter or expense of buying and storing them yourself.
Borrow Don't Buy (BDB) is Plymouth's Library of Things. Set up 5 years ago in 2017, thanks to a successful Crowdfunder, we were the 6th LoT's to open in the UK. Our inventory boasts hundreds of things for; DIY, hobby's, events, repairs, hosting, gardening, cooking, your little ones, techy stuff and more - take a look HERE
"YOU SHOULD HAVE ACCESS TO THE STUFF YOU NEED WITHOUT IT COSTING THE EARTH."
With over 20 Libraries of Things in the UK now we operate individually, but have created a network through which we annually share our experience and good practices. LoT's popularity has boomed in the past few years with people becoming more familiar with the idea of borrowing - saving money - reducing clutter - and reducing their carbon footprints. Changing mindsets to a collective responsibility for our planet, Libraries of Things are leading the way in getting local communities involved and benefitting by doing so!
With the £11,109 raised by our first Crowdfunder we established Borrow Don't Buy, set up all the boring (but vital) business bits, sourced the bulk of the inventory items, and recruited our first borrowers!
Since then, we have grown our members to over 1000 Borrowers,our inventory to over 420 items, have completed over 1700 loans. We have saved our members over £108,000 and helped them reduce their carbon footprints by making borrowing a viable option.
We have run 16 repair cafes with over 440 hours volunteered, and are working on bringing you the new Repair, Make and Mend Community (RMMC) funded by POP+ in collaboration with local organisations - Scrapstore, Makers HQ and Timebank SW.
In 2020, we momentarily shifted our focus to respond to the digital inclusion demand which was suddenly highlighted by the need to move everything online. We established the Get Everyone Online (GEO) project in collaboration with Nudge, and other organisations in the city. The local community donated hundreds of unused laptops, which we refurbished and passed on to those in need getting approx. 750 people online!
For 3 years we have run a Christmas decoration amnesty where people donate pre-loved decorations and we pass them on to those who might not be able to afford them bringing a little sparkle to peoples festive period and saving the decorations from landfill.
Thanks to funding from The Rank Foundation, and the government Kickstart scheme, we were able to add 2 new team members over the past year. We also were lucky enough to have a Sustainability Intern last summer thanks to the Low Carbon Devon project at Plymouth University helping us envision the next steps for Plymouth’s Library of Things.
Despite all the challenges faced during 2020/2021, all of the effort we have put into BDB has finally been recognised by the National Lottery and PlymouthLive Business Awards. We were shortlisted from a pool of over 1700 projects and was finalist on the National Lottery Awards Project of the Year 2021 category! We were also runner up for best Social Enterprise in Plymouth (whoop whoop) by PlymouthLive. It came as a big boost of energy to be recognised nationally and locally for what we do.
Speaking of local recognition, we are in conversations with the Council to be an instrumental tool and part of Plymouth's 2022 Climate Emergency Action Plan (CEAP 2022) - moving towards Net Zero in 2030!
Click the image below to read Plymouth's Climate Emergency Action Plan.
We are Crowdfunding because we need a boost to be able continue expanding the Library to meet the demand of our increasing members, pick back up plans disrupted by the pandemic, and ensure the future of the library is secure as we develop.
RECOVERY - Keeping it brief, as we are sure you know what we are about to say... This Crowdfunder was originally planned for Feb 2020 but, due to obvious reasons, was put on hold... The last 2 years saw us work hard to support and respond to the needs of our community and if we're being honest, it took a lot out of the business. Many of the things we needed to do took a backseat whilst we kept things ticking over. Now things are looking up, we need your help to get us back on track.
SUSTAINABLE UPSCALE - BDB has reached the point at which we need to upscale what we do to continue our growth. Unfortunately, everything costs money... so some of the money will go towards the 'boring' but essential stuff like running costs, staff, and business development. This will mean better access for you with an improved website, more payment and membership options, and better opening times.
MORE ITEMS - We want to expand the library with the things you want! The funds will boost our inventory, increasing the items available to our Borrowers. We will use a largest bulk of the money to source primarily second-hand, high-quality items that you have requested, help us to repair and maintain our existing items and re-design our workshop to accommodate these.
INCREASE OUR MEMBERS - Our main priority is to get more people borrowing! We want to continue growing our community of Borrowers, remind people we are here and get new Borrowers on board. Our memberships are ON SALE and are absolute bargains if we do say so ourselves! These are one time offers and will return to their normal price after this campaign ends. The more people that borrow, the better it is for the Library's development, the city and the planet.
RE-ENGAGE - For the past 2 years communication and engagement has been "complicated" to say the least. In addition to more marketing and outreach, the money will help get us back into the community again, both at events and hopefully in the form of a pilot Pop-Up shop in the coming year!
COLLABORATE - This boost will enable us to continue the Get Everyone Online project working with digital inclusion partners. We will be supporting people to set up community-led repair cafe's via Repair Make Mend Community which teaches people how to fix their things, reducing the need to buy and saving things from landfill! We are always looking to continue expanding our partnerships, so get in touch if you have an idea!
CARBON NEGATIVE - Our whole ethos is to be the catalyst for unused and inaccessible to become usable and accessible using Circular Economy. The money raised will help us develop a 'CO2 Saved' tracker for our members to see their impact and Borrow Don't Buy's journey to carbon negative. As part of Plymouth's Climate Emergency Action Plan (CEAP 2022) BDB is an important bridge between Plymouth's environmental goals and its community's involvement.
INCLUSIVE ACTION - With a lot of eco-friendly items and practices being more expensive than regular ones, there are many people excluded from making these swaps for environmental benefit. We want to work towards making the Library accessible for ALL by developing our Borrow-It-Forward scheme where people can pay for someone else to access Borrowing leaving no-one behind in the effort to save our planet.
All future development will keep these key points at the core:
For EVERY pledge no matter how big or small:
- We want to hear what YOU would like to see in the Library so make sure to let us know in the comments!
- Your name will go on our dedicated BDB Supporter page as your chosen reward specifies!
Maybe commitment isn't your thing, so grab a gift voucher or a cheeky discount instead of a membership, every pledge helps!
For EVERY MEMBERSHIP reward pledged:
- We will put £1 from every Membership bought through the Crowdfunder towards planting more trees in our Ecologi forest - we have 756 trees planted so far - help us give our forest a boost!
Become a member yourself or #borrowitforward and buy a membership for someone who needs it and cannot afford it. Read on for more on how our Memberships work.
If you have a larger organisation please get in touch for prices for bigger teams - [email protected]
If you have a larger business please get in touch for prices for bigger teams - [email protected]
BDB Tote bag
Pollenize Seed Packet
Thanks to the AWESOME local businesses Cosmic Kitchen, Yoke the Salon, The Gin Sanctuary, Pollenize, The Hutong Cafe and Farley's Food Co-op for donating rewards to help us reach our target! Keep your eyes peeled as more will be dropping in over the next few weeks! Go and check out what they are doing and support local!
- I'm still not sure how a Library of Things Work?
Check out our FAQ section on our website HERE
- How can I see what you already have in the inventory?
Check out our inventory HERE
- What happens if we raise more money? (That’d be AWESOME!)
We will then have more funds to achieve the goals such as Delivery and a Pop-up Shop! This is a collective effort we are orchestrating, the more members we have, the more things we can do together. See our Stretch Target for more.
If you've already bought a reward (thanks!) or can't pledge right now, there are other ways for you to show your support.
TELL THE WORLD! - If you love Borrow Don't Buy then please - tell your friends and family and anyone else you know. The more people that know about us the more donations we can get! @borrowdontbuy #borrowdontbuy #BDB
SHARING IS CARING - Crowdfunder suggests that every share on social media will raise around £20. So please share Borrow Don't Buy on your social media networks and help us reach our goal. A personal message will often lead to a donation!
Do you want to help out differently? Drop us a message via email or social media:
[email protected] | @borrowdontbuy | https://borrowdontbuy.co.uk/
And follow us on to keep up to date with our progress!