Freegle Reps Report 2012-08-16

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Delivering the Strategy

We’ve spent a great deal of time discussing the issues relating to delivering the Freegle stabilisation strategy

and considering various options for the future. We posted a message to Central with some details and asking for feedback from volunteers.


Freegle at the moment takes an estimated 1,000 to 1,200 hours a month to run, on top of people's normal duties of running their own local groups. These hours are being put in by about 30 people, all of them valuable, but some have taken on extraordinary responsibility and workloads to help us all.

We are seeing clear signs of burnout and overloading, and this is very worrying. Mainly because we care for each other, but also since Freegle as an organisation will not be able to continue and thrive unless we find a way to sustain the work that is necessary.

The Reps don't know for certain the best way to handle this, because it is difficult territory and we have no wish to upset individuals or Freegle. But we know decisions need to be made, so we have narrowed down some options for us all to consider.

Full message:

We talked about the useful feedback received from this message on Central and agreed that it would be helpful to expand a little more on the individual points raised and possible solutions.

Full message:

We have started to compile details of all national roles.

We discussed with Julie how we might best liaise with her so that we can gain an overall picture of the work that is done nationally by volunteers.



They are an organisation who will find volunteers to carry out specialist tasks. We have negotiated a reduced fee and asked them to find someone to produce a short YouTube video for us which we would like to be quirky, fun and accessible. They have found us someone and we agreed to contact them and discuss what we want. Since we first contacted them Katy of Norfolk has produced a very good video showing how to Freegle so we think a fun video explaining why people should Freegle might be the most useful.


Edward spoke to the developer of this mobile site to see whether we may be able to work with them. We think it is unlikely that this will go anywhere, but we’re still in contact with them.

A case study on Freegle

Cat met with a consultant who is writing a report for DEFRA on reuse in the construction sector. The aim of her meeting was to discuss local initiatives, however as a result of her talks he is going to write up a case study for Freegle.

TV Documentary

Silver River Productions are producing a documentary series for BBC TV based around charities that are local, volunteer run with an income of less than £10,000. Cat is making an application on our behalf. Charities that end up being featured in the series will receive considerable exposure alongside assistance with their fund-raising. (Update August 2012 - We have not been successful).

WRAP Reuse Forums

We agreed for Cat to attend these in Banbury on 5 September and London on 8 October.

Twitter for Good Program for Non Profits

Cat has submitted an application for @ThisIsFreegle and we have reached the second stage.


We received a very generous gift aided donation of £1200, specifically for media expenses, from Alex Hildyard in Edinburgh.

We agreed to have a donors page on the website and that we would not list donations in order of the amounts.

Some of the money has been used to reimburse the Head of Media (Cat) for mobile phone, broadband costs and travel costs incurred so far this financial year. Ongoing mobile phone and broadband costs will be reimbursed as incurred. Details of retrospective approval of travel costs were posted on Central.

Another portion of the money has been spent on promotional business cards which are available for all groups. Saira and Sian have ordered them from Vistaprint and are arranging despatch to groups who request them.

Since opening up the donation options we have received:

CAF £100.00 Charities Trust (payroll giving) £50.00 month

Virgin Money Giving £135.07 plus £32.50 gift aid to come back

Give as You Live Everyclick £14.28

Direct Payments £41.00


Unused or Redundant National Groups

We agreed that this should be adopted.

Masters Thesis Research

An enquiry was received from an MSc student at Sheffield Hallam University. We agreed that we would be prepared to ask local groups to advertise his questionnaire and for our Facebook and Twitter account to publicise it.

PhD Research

Michael Foden let us know that he is planning in-depth interviews with Freegle users (over 2,000 people said they would be willing to be interviewed) and continuing to analyse the results of the questionnaire.


Jacky explained that with the introduction of the contact form on the website the number of messages received in the mailbox has increased significantly. We approved the appointment of Jacqui Houlding to help with the extra workload.

Reps Reports

Alison agreed to undertake these from now on.

GAT Procedures

We endorsed a change to the GAT Role and Remit


We discussed the requirement for national volunteers who are not moderators to be vouched for by an existing moderator, have Reps approval and advise the local group

We are considering asking Julie to keep the records.

Back to Freegle Representative Group or Freegle Reps Report 2012-07-16, or forwards to Freegle Reps Report 2012-09-16