We can all agree that social media, Facebook specifically, comes with a wide range of advantages and disadvantages. Some of the disadvantages are: wasting time, spreading misinformation, cyberbullying, ALL the opinions, privacy issues, etc. — the list could go on and on. But for me, there’s one advantage that outweighs the negative implications of social media, and that’s the sense of community that Facebook can provide.
A community that has positively impacted my life and those of many other moms is a private Facebook group called Free Porch Pick Up. According to the About section on the page, the group “was started by friends after we realized that we all have extra things around the house that we would love to pass along for others to enjoy. Bonus that the idea is to give things away and share the love!”
The idea is simple: members of the group post good-quality items that they no longer want; other members claim the items (next!, next!, next!); then the items are left on their front porch for pick-up. Post Item. Pick up item. Repeat.
But the group is SO much more than that.
This private Facebook group has morphed into a small, local community of moms and women who find joy in giving to others. I just picked up a bunch of great Paw Patrol toys for my son for Christmas and I just gave away a pair of cute wedges that I’d never worn (and have had in my closet for years).
During Halloween, the admins of the group created a thread specifically for Halloween costumes. We can all agree that Halloween costumes are overpriced, especially to just be worn for one night (if you’re lucky). So we all posted costumes our children had outgrown that could be passed along to others who needed that specific size for the season. It was a huge success! And then there’s the inflatable ‘Happy Birthday’ banner that has made an appearance at at least four different birthday parties.
Before writing this article, I asked other members why they valued the group. Their responses, shown below, speak volumes.
I HIGHLY recommend creating or joining a community such as this one. It’s a great way to save money and give back to others around you.
If you’re going to create a group, here are a few tips and rules to consider:
- Items must be good quality.
- Items must be free.
- Once items are picked up, delete the initial post so that all photos left on the page are items that are still available for pick up.
- Keep it small! Our group has approximately 275 members. Because you are giving out your address for pick up, you want to maintain the safety of the group members.