A popup shop with a difference recently appeared outside the Union Church on the corner of Wainui Road and Stewart Street, and it’s all about sharing.
Whāingaroa Aroha is the work of local Dwayne Henshilwood who first came across the initiative to share excess produce with the local community in Te Awamutu.
Dwayne is the type of guy who hates to see things go to waste, especially when it comes to food and his pallet and beer crate shed provides a space for people to share their surplus stock.
“It just fits in really nicely with what’s already happening in the community and any way we can minimise waste is a good thing,” he says.
“Plenty of us grow things and they all seem to come on at once. It feels really good sharing something that you have grown.”
Dwayne says the church is supportive of his initiative and having it in such a central location makes it easily accessible.
“It (Whāingaroa Aroha) went through the committee and they were really keen. It fits in with their kaupapa.”
The philosophy of sharing food that might ordinarily go to waste inspires Dwayne and he’s pleased to see the shelves full and then empty again the next day.
He’s heard really great stories of local kids on the way to school helping themselves to a morning snack.
Xtreme Zero Waste have kindly supplied books and Dwayne says the generous people of Raglan have dropped off plants, bulbs, myriad of fruit and vegetables and someone even left a stack of handmade fabric bags.
Driving past Whāingaroa Aroha most days on his way to work, he keeps an eye on the little shed and does a bit of a tidy up when necessary.
Although the little sharing shed is Dwayne’s brainchild he is more than happy for others to add to it their own ideas.
“If people were interested they could be tried out around the local community.”
For updates and more information Whāingaroa Aroha has its own Facebook page.