Spreading the art of gifting

A group of people gathered at an organic shop to understand the nuances of gifting culture

Published - April 19, 2018 06:31 pm IST

Gifting is no longer restricted to the act of giving and receiving commodities, it has gone far beyond that. Redefining the term is Kaushiek Pranoo’s Facebook page called Anbudan (With Love) - Gift Culture Chennai, where members can post an offering of items/skills/services that they can extend to the community and also request and receive from the community.

Anbudan was conceived to spread gift culture. The former corporate sector employee says, “The theme has been prominent in my life for the last five years. A lot of my friends have been practising this in different ways. I’ve been learning to give and especially to receive. I wanted to bring this to my hometown to see if we can create these little gifting pockets in as many places as possible.”

Pranoo feels that an experiential spreading of this idea will create a society-driven initiative rather than an individual driven one. This is where gifting experiments come into play. Pranoo says, “I see Anbudan as a series of experiments — a way for each of us to experiment and discover a way of giving and receiving with the various communities we are part of.”

A tiny experiment people can conduct in their own communities is gift circles. Pranoo explains the concept.

“It involves people bringing at least one item/skill that one cherishes, something that has a story and means something and offers it to the circle after sharing the story. In the end, people from the group pick up the items/skills offered.”

One of the participants Durgesh Nandini is an unschooling mother of two children. When asked about her involvement with gift economy she says, “I’ve attended a lot of workshops and conferences which employ gift economy. I myself host workshops and rather than pricing them, I’ve started implementing gift economy.”

Gifting in a gift economy isn’t a compulsion. It is rather an act of giving without expectations or charity in the mix.

reStore, as a part of Anbudan’s initiative, has launched an Anbudan corner where customers can offer and receive in the spirit of gift culture.

You can place items in this corner and if you see anything you need, you can take it. Chennai has hopped onto the gift culture bandwagon. For more information check out Pranoo’s Facebook group Anbudan (With Love) - Gift Culture Chennai .

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