The Voices We Amplify on Earth Day
A good friend of mine is the dedicated mother of two boys, ages 4 and 6. The six year old, whom I'll call "J," is a sweet and sensitive soul, big-eyed and big-hearted. Several months back, he started washing his hands and arms. A lot. The washing increased in frequency until his skin became raw, and all their washcloths piled up in the hamper. Mom and Dad discussed and fretted, even brought J to a child psychologist, but no one could figure out what was upsetting him and making him want to wash all the time. Then came a morning when Mom was chaperoning J's class at a museum - J wanted to stay at the museum longer and Mom decided to accommodate, a spontaneous museum afternoon where they could spend time with different art of J's choosing. That evening, J built a model of a beautiful building (Dad is an architect). When asked what it was, he replied, "It's a temple - I like temples because they are quiet and peaceful and calm."
"That's interesting," Mom thought, "kind of the opposite of our home environment." But here's where she deserves extra props. Instead of chalking it up to the inevitable chaos from two working parents raising two small boys in a major metropolitan area, she asked herself how she might be contributing to that chaos. And through her introspection, it dawned on her that the issue was politics. Whenever she discussed politics - with Dad, with friends, on the phone - she would quickly become outraged, and that energy would permeate through their home. She made a rule - no watching or discussing politics in the house. And just like that, the hand-washing stopped.
We all can choose which voices we amplify and which we do not. Here at Dare Fashion, we have a Dare to Care initiative to develop sustainable apparel solutions to keep our planet healthy. We're deeply concerned that our government's policies may not be in the best interest of planet Earth. But our country is so much more than our government - it's made of people, and during our St. Patrick's Day Go Green campaign, we were SO INSPIRED by all the great things Dare customers around the world are doing to make our planet greener. These are the voices that we want to amplify. So, in celebration of Earth Day, here are all the green tips that you submitted during our Go Green campaign. Way to go, everyone! Keep up the great work - let's continue to fight the good fight!
The tips are organized into 4 sections: Getting around, Home is where the Heart is, Don't Buy it, Grow it! & Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Have another tip? Please add it to the Comments Section - we'd love to amplify your voice!
"Walk or bike to work or while running errands. It saves on gas and emissions and it’s healthy for your body!" -Sharon-Marie J.
"Make several trips at once" -Jennifer E.
"I walk to church every Sunday instead of driving my car." -Philip K.
"I got a cart to put on my bike in the summer and use it to go grocery shopping instead of using the car. I can haul up to 50 lbs at a time." -Michele N.
"Charge electronics in the car. The alternator in your car is making enough power to charge phones, tablets, etc. You will use less electricity at home, saving resources and money!" -Tonda S.
Home is where the Heart is
"Turn down the heat - use a blanket and cuddle up together" -Tess W.
"Turn the temperature down on your hot water heater. Or better yet, invest in an instant hot water heater - heat only what you need when you need it" -Ursula R. S.
"Unplugging appliances when you are done using them saves electricity and your electricity bill." -Erika A.
"LED lightbulbs use much less energy and last for several years longer than regular bulbs. Plus you can get programmable ones now so you can turn them off and on remotely or on timers." -Juliann K.
"I have installed solar panels and LED lightbulbs" -Anthea
"I purchased a SunPort, it is a plug accessory that pulls energy from the solar energy my utility company makes instead of the fossil fuel energy. The company’s idea is to have enough people using SunPorts that the utility companies see the actual, real time solar energy demand and usage from their customers which should hopefully encourage the companies to transition more and more to sustainable natural energy sources. I found them on Kickstarter, the campaign is closed but you can get all the info from the Kickstarter site to route you to the company page if you are interested ;)" -Daunell
"Unplug any unused electronics/items. Saves energy and helps lower the power bill a bit" -April H.
"Use a clothes line instead of a dryer it saves energy" -Charma L.
"I turn the shower off while soaping up" -Shanna
Don't Buy it, Grow it!
"Last year I started a container garden with tomatoes, peppers and squash on the apartment balcony, and joined a CSA." -Lauren T.
"Started a community clean up and garden team. Helping neighbors learn how little things can have a big impact ." -Alisha H.
"I am planting herbs and flowers as well as grass to help. I have also taught my children to pick up trash when ever they see it on the ground. It maybe little but it helps. Thank you" -Raven
"I stopped using weed killer on the lawn and instead rekindles the delight I had as a child to see the pretty yellow flowers and everything I took for granted! Like Honeybees!! When I see them visit the dandelions, I give thanks and don’t ever want to take them for granted again!!" -Chris W.
"We recycle everything we can. We are also replacing all of the high water demand plants and shrubs with low water, drought tolerant plants. And finally, we will be installing a rain Barrera watering system to gather water for the flowers, etc." -Michelle W.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
"Use tea towels and cotton napkins instead of paper towels- help save money by not buying them and also not throwing them away" -D'Anna K.
"Always take your own shopping bag made of fabric or linen to avoid plastic bags. I go to a refill bar with my plastic bottles to get shampoo, liquid soap, dishwasher, laundry detergent and softener, even disinfectant and bleach" -Ingrid D.
"Reuse your plastics this includes bottles and shopping bags" -Tempest C.
"I make compost with our coffee grounds and egg shells and turn off the faucet when brushing my teeth." -Karen L.
"I have a notation on my e mail to consider the environment before printing. And I have paperless invoicing for all of my bills." -Leslie M.
"I turn off the water in the shower while I scrub." -Eponine
"I have signed up for e-statements for my bank accounts and credit cards." -Katherine M.
"Reuse shopping bags. Be aware of running water and electricity consumption. Recycle!!!!! Clean your garbage!!" -Christy Lee F.
"Recycle everything you can." -Christa
"I recycle the overnight packages we receive at work along with boxes and pop cans. I also try to use my own bags when i shop at the grocery store or other stores." -Cathy K.
"Always keep a reusable shopping bag in your car!" -Kathy H.
"We reuse containers that we buy food in like butter, cream cheese, take out, anything that comes in a plastic bowl. They will wash well in the dishwasher for quite a while and they also freeze well." -K
"We recycle." -Kelsey B.
"I reuse Christmas gift boxes, wrapping paper, and toilet paper rolls to make handy little organizers for everything from desk organizers to spice racks. It's an easy way to reduce the waste from Christmas and the only limit to the creativity is your imagination." -Brandi W.
"We recycle grocery containers from the store so that less ends up in the landfill. Also composting old produce so that my garden benefits!" -Amber M.
"I recycle everything I can, walk rather than drive when that’s an option, and use energy efficient bulbs in all my lights." -MP
"I air dry all my clothes, I reuse everything I can, jars especially and I try to buy green. My toothbrushes handle which is made from composite wood and the brush heads are replaceable." -Heather W.