OPERATION: Festival Fun Salvage (FFS)
A few days ago I saw a video showing the aftermath of a major music festival here in the UK. 80 to 100 thousand descend upon fields to camp out for 2 or 3 nights to see their favourite bands. However afterwards it’s a mess. A colossal mess. People leave a huge amount of perfectly good stuff behind.
1 man tents all the way to 10 man tents, sleeping bags, rucksacks, camping gear like torches and bottles and even valuables. This on top of the ridiculous amount of rubbish that’s left behind as well. Most festivals offer tickets in return for being part of the clean up crew though, but most of it goes to land fills.
Some festivals though, like the Reading Festival, offer the opportunity to apply as a salvage team to recover re-usable equipment and save it from landfills. You get to keep what you find.
This is what I’d like to do next year (2017):
- Form up a team of Toy Soldiers, 4 or more, with at least one driver for a van.
- Apply to various festivals as a salvage team
- Gather up tents, sleeping bags and other gear.
- Clean up what can be cleaned (think paddling pool in the garden, hose and soap), bundle it up into 1 man packs.
- Donate the packs to homeless and refugee charities who can make good use of it.
- (Some tents may be kept aside to be used for a Toy Soldier Camp out, and you can keep some things for yourself, so long as the majority goes to helping others)
This can be emulated in other countries as well, though you’ll have to check with each individual festival what the requirements are for applying as a salvage team. If you apply as under ‘Toy Soldiers Unite’ let me know so I can stay abreast of legalities.
On another note it was brought up in the chat about the legalities in donating to the homeless equipment and supplies. Apparently misuse can trail back to the donater in some states of America. So when prepping this mission, check with local homeless and refugee charities. They may have run similar operations as well, and can give better information.
Also, kudos to Apothecary Chrysalice for inadvertently putting me onto this.
I second that opinion, also in my 6 years of working as accreditation manager at a medium sized festival I have learned a few things.
1 the collection of usable items is called ‘Tatting’,
2 various festivals have different rules about that action and the laws of the lands do affect it, on the site I work as the pubic have until 2:30 to leave any items retrieved for personal use before that time can be classed as stealing so please be careful,
3 The scouts tend to go to a lot of UK festivals to retrieve useable tents to send off to various places and causes so don’t be disappointed if your offer to do so is turned down by a smaller festival, chances are they already have team in place,
and 4 If you want to earn a few pennies while having the opportunity to do so DC site services have huge crews that do a lot of the UK festivals during the the season managing litter picking and post festival clean up and they are some of the nicest bunch of people I have ever met and EXPERT Tatters :)
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