Whe is looking for toys, decorative items or household goods, can now go to a very special shop in Darmstadt: the “free shop” at Bessunger Strasse 132. The small shop in the so-called postal settlement has been open since last Saturday open. In addition to a colorful range of goods, from plush toys to dishes to small electrical appliances such as egg cookers and toasters, the concept of the little shop should be particularly impressive: Anyone looking for and finding something can simply take their new favorite with them – without paying for it. When it comes to “free charging”, the name says it all.
Bastian Ripper and his colleagues from the association “Together in the Post Office” came up with the idea of a somewhat different business. The association, which takes care of senior citizens, single people and those in need in the settlement, wanted to create a meeting point for residents of the district.
On the other hand, the store should offer items that otherwise end up in cellars, attics or even in the garbage can the chance of new owners. “There are so many beautiful things that are lying around unused somewhere,” says Ripper. “And there are many people who are looking for something special.”
“It has nothing to do with social need”
So both sides would have to be brought together, the club chairman thought. This apparently succeeded on the opening day. Interested people came from almost all parts of Darmstadt and even visitors from Griesheim, Roßdorf, Seeheim and Stockstadt am Main, among others.
Many items quickly found new owners. A DVD player, for example, that is now moving in with a man who, according to the association, has so far not been able to afford a replacement for his defective device. Another visitor chose a fan, a little girl got a big red plush bear.
The shop is there for everyone, Ripper emphasizes. “It has nothing to do with social need.” If you find something, you can take it with you. If you still want to give something, a donation box is available. The project is financed exclusively through voluntary material and cash donations. Only clothing and large electrical appliances such as refrigerators would not be accepted.
Donations of money are invested in rent and ancillary costs for the business, the employees in the shop are volunteers. The free shop is open on Saturdays and Mondays from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Information about the business and donation opportunities is available at www.postsiedlung.de.