Bagging out plastic


Romsey Neighbourhood House volunteers are saying no to plastic by banding together and creating recycled Boomerang Bags.

The initiative started in 2013 when two girls started a conversation about plastic bags.

They discovered one million plastic bags are being used every minute, while 10.46 million tonnes of fabric waste was created each year.

The girls decided to create a website and platform for others to support the diversion of waste into reusable bags to replace plastic bags – the initiative has now spread to more than 800 communities worldwide.

Since August last year, Romsey Neighbourhood House has been hard at work every Wednesday and have now produced more than 300 bags for residents to use.

Volunteer Laurie Sklifas said all of the materials and sewing machines had been donated to the initiative from community members.

“Sunbury, Woodend and Lancefield have all been a great support to us,” she said.

“When I first started doing this I said I can’t sew, but I eventually got in there and learn’t how to do it.”

Romsey Neighbourhood House co-ordinator Michelle Balthazar said all of the Neighbourhood Houses in the Macedon Ranges were part of the cause.

“It’s great to see all of the Neighbourhood Houses work with Boomerang Bags volunteers in the shire. We’re now hoping to get into the local IGA and give shoppers an opportunity to use these bags.” she said.

“We’ve previously done workshops on sustainability at the Neighbourhood House and this project is in line with our sustainability policies.

“This amazing band of women have gotten together to do something about this problem with plastic and it would be great to see some more volunteers support.

“The Neighbourhood House tries to promote a range of environmental sustainability projects for the community to be a part of. We’re also a drop-off point for old mobile phones, printer cartridges, batteries and plastic drink bottle tops, which are recycled into prosthetic limbs.”

Volunteers meet Wednesdays between 10am-2pm at Romsey Neighbourhood House.

People interested in volunteering can call Romsey Neighbourhood House on 5429 6724.