vienna, austria: leila wien
Leila Wien. A library of things. Started by a few co-founders in Vienna drawing on inspiration from other cities, the shop enables community members to borrow things via their membership. For a small fee each year, people can come in and borrow whatever they need for a month at a time. They offer everything! From sports equipment to home goods to travel to office supplies and anything in between.
This is the epitome of the shared economy (people sharing resources). The goods are donated from other community members or organizations and then are used again and again by borrowing. This enables those that may not be able to afford the items to be able to use them while also not generating more waste through continual purchasing. I had never seen a library of things before and thought it was the coolest concept ever!
The shop is entirely run by volunteers. While I was there I met one of the co-founders, Ina. She generously explained to me so much about the model (open a couple of days a week, 7 volunteers, $36/year to join), the challenges (securing a space, resources), the vision (adding more stores in Vienna). She and her team also speak at events and have created toolkits to further scale Leila Wien. The model is becoming more wide-spread and could clearly be applied to many things! My mom even texted me after I posted this that we should start one when I'm back! We shall see!! :)
If you are interested in learning more, here is the tool-kit! http://www.leihladen.at/wp/
Random spottings on my walk there! Meditation and restart your heart. #bestworldever