Kia ora, my name is Nicola and I have a passion for nature and the environment. I also have a passion for people’s health and well-being which is why I chose to become a physiotherapist. I moved to Whangamata in October 2018 to practice physiotherapy at The Physio Room but noticed there was something missing in this piece of paradise…a place I could refill my house-hold cleaning products. After months of driving to Thames or Tauranga to re-stock, I decided to make my own. This is when Aspire Refillery & Eco Store began.
With the aim to have a physical store by spring, 2020 I have settled for starting online.
The purpose of Aspire Refillery & Eco Store is to help the every-day shopper reduce their plastic consumption. Did you know that the average kiwi (human) consumes 31kg of plastic annually but only recycles 5.58kg? The rest of course ends up in landfills, not biodegrading…just breaking up into smaller and smaller pieces. These pieces end up in our oceans with horrific consequences to the wildlife (ecotricity.co.nz, 2019). Approximately one garbage truck of plastic waste is dumped into the ocean every minute… I don’t know about you guys but to me, that is horrifying, and I want to do something about that! Most of us enjoy our daily stroll or surf on the beach and how lucky are we to live here! Now let’s do something to help it.
We all know about the 5 R’s (refuse, reduce, reuse, repurpose, recycle) right? Well Aspire aims to help you refuse, reduce and reuse. Specifically, refusing plastic packaging where possible and reusing household product bottles and refill them with the products you need. At this stage, my products are every-day products we use around the home and business. I eventually will add bulk food products to that list when I get a physical shop and coffee (a definite necessity in my home and workplace) will also be coming shortly. The products that I stock are ethical and sustainable, and I hope to continue to build on this in the future, stocking more local products where possible.
I feel it is important now more than ever to look after your health, your family’s health, and the health of the natural environment. Covid-19 has taught us that. You don’t have to go ‘all out’ to begin. Making small changes like using a compost bin for your food scraps to reduce to amount of rubbish that goes into your bin, refilling one container instead of purchasing another plastic bottle, purchasing sustainable and biodegradable products, walking more and driving less (how great has it been without cars on the road!)…any positive change will have a positive influence no matter how small.
We are all in this together. Let’s act now to protect this beautiful place we call home.