How to Start a Local Freecycle Group

The freecycling movement is made up of almost 5,000 local community groups around the world. It's a grassroots movement of people who are giving (& getting) stuff for free in their towns while keeping usable items out of the landfill. Each local group is run by a local volunteer moderator and membership is in the groups is free. Some towns don't yet have a local group, but here's how you can start one!


  1. Image titled SearchForGroups Step 1
    First find out if there is already a local group in your area. Visit the group directory, the Trash Nothing Freecycling Group Finder and the Overcycle Recycling Group Finder to search for groups near you. Note: the Trash Nothing and the Overcycle sites often return incorrect information about groups.
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    If there is already a group in your area, you can still start a new group but you should make its focus on serving a smaller (or larger) area than the existing local groups so that you aren't directly competing with the existing groups.
  3. Image titled DecideToStartAGroup Step 3
    Once you've decided to start a group in your area, you'll need to choose which website you want to run your group from. The leading sites for running freecycling groups are, trash nothing!, Freegle (UK only) and Full Circles (Canada only). Each site has it's own advantages that you should research before choosing.
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    And creating a new freecycling group is only the first step! To really make your group succeed, you'll need to promote your group to gain members and foster and nurture the group to help it grow.


  • Time! Must have some time throughout the day to devote to moderating a group, just to check and see if things are going okay. It is a volunteer position - there is no pay or tangible benefits, just the joy of knowing you're giving back to your community.
  • Basic knowledge of the freecycling rules.
  • Internet access and computer skills.
  • Writing skills. Correct spelling, proper punctuation, complete sentences, and proper grammar are a must.
  • Must live in the area served by the potential freecycling group.
  • Moderators should have the following qualifications:
  • A positive attitude and the ability to keep your cool when dealing with irate or irresponsible members.
  • An interest in environmental causes. You know that freecycle isn't about FREE stuff but about keeping stuff out of the landfills and building community.

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Categories: Buying Wisely | Reduce Recycle and Reuse