Day 22

Home

SPONSORED BY Dr. Bronner’s

PGC Notes: As a reminder, you must follow all submission instructions in order to be considered for a daily prize. This means including your name, username, email address, and school in every submission. Please be sure to fully read the instructions for each challenge!  Thanks. 

OVERVIEW

“You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.”

-Jane Goodall, primatologist, ethologist, anthropologist, and UN Messenger of Peace

Home.

We shape where we live just as much as it shapes us. Our home is a reflection of who we are, who we aspire to be, and what we value in our lives.

Think about your room. Maybe you have photos strung on the wall capturing precious moments. Maybe the way you line your shelves offers insight into your hobbies and passions. Even the color scheme in your room reflects your individual taste and style. Consider your furnishings, your bedding, the products you clean with – what’s the story you are telling through your belongings in your space? And how does your personal space impact your well being and that of the planet?  

Here are a few things to think  

Your bed: We spend approximately eight hours a night sleeping—almost one-third of our lives. As we sleep, our bodies heal, rest, and rejuvenate. But our mattresses and bedding can contain toxic chemicals linked to serious health problems, adding unnecessary work to the task of rejuvenation and potentially limiting the body’s innate ability to preserve our health.” ~Madesafe.org

Your cleaning products: Cleaning may not be fun, but it’s even worse when the ingredients in your products leave harmful chemical residue in place of dirt and grime.  Certain chemicals in cleaning products have been linked to fertility problems, birth defects, increased risk of breast cancer, asthma and respiratory disorders, and hormone disruption. What’s more, there is no federal law requiring cleaning product companies to list all the ingredients in their products on the label. Products you clean your home with shouldn’t contain toxic ingredients in the first place.” ~Women’s Voices for the Earth

Your furnishings: Something else we might not think about is our furniture, what we use to decorate our homes or dorms. Furniture coverings, paint and even air fresheners contain VOCs (Volatile Organic Chemicals) like cleaning products. What’s more, furniture foam, and carpet padding contain flame retardants like TDCIPP and (PDE’s) Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (unless you live in San Francisco, which was the first city to restrict flame retardants). Exposure to these harmful chemicals are linked to cancer, reproductive and nervous system issues and thyroid problems.

On a more optimistic note, you can start taking steps to make your home a more sustainable and non-toxic place. To make our living space sustainable, we need to call on our creativity to rethink the status quo. And today, that’s exactly what we want to challenge you to do.

Taking responsibility for the space we live in prompts us to reconsider how we influence the other environments we operate in. If everyone transforms the way we structure our individual homes, it will add up to form a broader mosaic of buildings and communities that are designed to promote an environmentally and socially responsible way of life. Doesn’t that sound like a worthy goal to strive towards?

Note: Here is a resource page from Humboldt State University’s residential life office that might inspire you on your campus!

CHALLENGE

Green

20 POINTS

Think

Let’s start with the place you spend most of your time, your bed! Whether sleeping, studying, reading, or hanging out, we spend about 25 years of our lives in our beds. Yet, there are harmful toxins hiding in conventional mattresses and bedding that emit gases over time, releasing dangerous chemicals into your body and the air. Not to mention, sleeping on bedding made with conventionally grown cotton or synthetics like polyester increases your chemical exposure further. Though conventional cotton only accounts for 2.4% of the world’s cropland, it is responsible for 24% of global pesticide use. Conversely, organic cotton is grown without pesticides or herbicides and is not genetically modified.

Challenge

Start to think about your bedtime routine and how you might reimagine it once you become an informed consumer.

First, read Detox your sleep, a brand new report from our partner Made Safe.  

  • Once you have finished reading the report, select one item from your bed and do some research.
    • What it is made of and where it was made?
    • Share two important facts/ concerns associated with the materials used.
    • What surprised you about this information?
  • Find a sustainable alternative (let us know the website where you found it and best pricing you can find) for one of your items and share two health and environmental benefits of the alternative. (Check out the great companies listed in the report)
  • Make a creative presentation comparing your conventional and sustainable items and caption with what you learned about each.

Deliverables

Upload a PDF Document with your responses. Please include your name (or team name), username, email address, and school.

Submission Guidelines

  • If you do not see an upload button, you need to log in
  • Please submit all entries as PDFs – no word or pages docs.
  • Please save filenames using the following format: firstname_lastname_challengeday_challengelevel_year.pdf (ex: kasie_shils_day1_green_2018.pdf)
  • Do not include # or spaces in filenames
  • Please be sure to include all content for your submission in one doc
  • Do not upload a file bigger than 5 MB
  • You will get a confirmation on screen that your submission uploaded correctly (green) or that it failed (red) and to try again.
  • If your total points do not change, your submission did not load correctly and you will have to try again. You can see your points total by logging out and back in again.
  • If you are having trouble uploading, try using a different browser
  • Send any questions you have to info@turninggreen.org
  • Don’t forget to post about the challenge and your learnings/doings on social media and tag us on Facebook @TurningGreen, on Twitter @TurningGreenOrg, and on Instagram @TurningGreenOrg and #PGC2018.
The deadline for entering this challenge has past.

Greener

40 POINTS

Think

Minimalism is a lifestyle that is growing in popularity all over the world. Contrary to what some may believe, minimalism is not about being in scarcity – it’s simply about keeping and purchasing only what adds value to your life, and making space for other things that are meaningful to you, like experiences and relationships. If what you own doesn’t serve a purpose or make you happy, it’s worth re-thinking its place in your life.

So how is minimalism good for the planet? For one, finding joy in fewer items in a world seemingly dedicated to consumerism can substantially slow climate change. According to a study published in the Journal in Industrial Ecology, what people purchase is responsible for up to 60% of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Secondly, by being a conscious consumer and thinking about what you really need in your life, you will naturally consume less, preserving earth’s finite and precious resources. Thirdly, you will be mindful of your purchases, investing in good quality, socially- and environmentally-responsible products that can serve you for a long time. For example, you might want to discard the cleaning products that are harmful (do so through the local hazardous waste drop off in your community – see here for more info) and keep a multi-purpose castile soap, like the one from our partner Dr Bronner’s or make one yourself. One simple lifestyle change can have such a profound impact on your life, mindset and the world.

Challenge

  • Watch this video to learn about how living with less has had a positive influence on people’s lives.
  • It’s time to start decluttering your own life, to make space for things that truly matter.
    • Take a look at this Decluttering Cheat Sheet. Focus on decluttering the items from at least one of the “Days” on the list.
    • Feel free to come up with your own personalized category if you feel like there’s something in your life that needs decluttering which isn’t on the list
    • Here are some tips to aid your decluttering process. Feel free to be creative and approach this process your own way
      • Lay out everything you want to declutter (e.g. books or clothes)
      • Ask yourself these questions and answer honestly: does this item spark joy? Does it serve a purpose in my life? If not, swap, sell or donate it.
      • Sort items into piles. Some ideas: things you use nearly everyday and things you haven’t used in 6 months
  • Did you have any insights during the decluttering process, or after reading this challenge? What is your take away from this challenge? Will you make any changes to your life moving forward?

Deliverables

Upload a PDF Document with your responses. Please include your name (or team name), username, email address and school.

Submission Guidelines

  • If you do not see an upload button, you need to log in
  • Please submit all entries as PDFs – no word or pages docs.
  • Please save filenames using the following format: firstname_lastname_challengeday_challengelevel_year.pdf (ex: kasie_shils_day1_greener_2018.pdf)
  • Do not include # or spaces in filenames
  • Please be sure to include all content for your submission in one doc
  • Do not upload a file bigger than 5 MB
  • You will get a confirmation on screen that your submission uploaded correctly (green) or that it failed (red) and to try again.
  • If your total points do not change, your submission did not load correctly and you will have to try again. You can see your points total by logging out and back in again.
  • If you are having trouble uploading, try using a different browser
  • Send any questions you have to info@turninggreen.org
  • Don’t forget to post about the challenge and your learnings/doings on social media and tag us on Facebook @TurningGreen, on Twitter @TurningGreenOrg, and on Instagram @TurningGreenOrg and #PGC2018.
The deadline for entering this challenge has past.

Greenest

60 POINTS

Think

In 1976 a bill was passed called the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) to protect people and planet from harmful chemical exposures. Yet, some 62,000 toxins escaped testing and most can still be found on the market. Since 1976, over 22,000 chemicals have been introduced without any testing for public or environmental safety.

Many of these chemicals can be found in our everyday products including those we clean with. Companies are not required to list ingredients on labels, so we wind up vulnerable to many undisclosed toxins. As consumers, we must be informed in order to make healthy choices and demand that companies make human and environmental health a top priority. TG partner, Women’s Voices for the Earth has dedicated many years to amplifying women’s voices to eliminate the toxic chemical that harm our health and communities. Check out their website here to see how they make this vision a reality! And just so you get a sense for a company that is living its values take a look at the Cosmic Principles of our partner Dr. Bronner’s!

Challenge

It’s very simple (and economical) to make your own cleaning products from common household items like baking soda, vinegar, lemon juice, organic castile soap and organic essential oils. Time to roll up your sleeves and make a simple DIY cleaning product. Find out just how easy and effective green cleaning can be!

  • Find a recipe online for a simple multipurpose cleaner, or a cleaner meant for toilets, sinks and showers.
    • Here are some Youtube videos that you can check out to get you started: Lisa Bronner’s Green Cleaning Starter Kit.
    • You can also check out Women’s Voices for the Earth, an organization working to get rid of the toxic chemicals in our everyday household cleaning, beauty and hygiene products.
    • Use what you have or borrow the ingredients you need. Reuse a spray bottle or other container, and find a zero waste option for scrubbing or application.
    • Important tips:
      • Don’t mix castile soap and vinegar – one is a base, one is an acid, so they will react and cancel each other out
      • Don’t mix baking soda and vinegar for the same reason
      • Don’t use vinegar on granite, marble, stone, iron or hardwood floors. Vinegar could damage these surfaces.
  • Go ahead and make your new cleaner.
    • Use it to clean your bathroom or other space. How does it smell compared to the products you have used in the past?
    • Tip: pick your favorite essential oil scent and add a few drops into your new cleaning product for a lovely smell!
  • Create a drawing, photo or illustration of your DIY cleaning product with the recipe. (Here’s a fun example). Post to Instagram and caption it with one reason why cleaning green is important to human and environmental health. Tag @TurningGreenOrg, @drbronner @women4earth, @madesafehq and use the hashtags #PGC2018 and #GreenClean.

Deliverables

Upload a PDF Document with your responses, photo or drawing, and a full report on how your DIY process went. Include a screenshot of your social media post. Please include your name (or team name), username, email address and school.
Submission Guidelines

  • If you do not see an upload button, you need to log in
  • Please submit all entries as PDFs – no word or pages docs.
  • Please save filenames using the following format: firstname_lastname_challengeday_challengelevel_year.pdf (ex: kasie_shils_day1_greenest_2018.pdf)
  • Do not include # or spaces in filenames
  • Please be sure to include all content for your submission in one doc
  • Do not upload a file bigger than 5 MB
  • You will get a confirmation on screen that your submission uploaded correctly (green) or that it failed (red) and to try again.
  • If your total points do not change, your submission did not load correctly and you will have to try again. You can see your points total by logging out and back in again.
  • If you are having trouble uploading, try using a different browser
  • Send any questions you have to info@turninggreen.org
  • Don’t forget to post about the challenge and your learnings/doings on social media and tag us on Facebook @TurningGreen, on Twitter @TurningGreenOrg, and on Instagram @TurningGreenOrg and #PGC2018.
The deadline for entering this challenge has past.

TODAY’S PRIZES

up to 10 winners from the greener challenge will receive:

Dr. Bronner’s Organic Bar Soap
Coyuchi Organic Cotton Bath Towel
Crow Canyon Home Enamel Dinner Set
Fluf Organic Cotton Lunch Bag

RW Garcia NonGMO Sweet Potato Crackers
If You Care Sponge Cloths
If You Care Fair Trade Household Gloves
Bambooee Washable Bamboo Towels

up to 10 winners from the greenest challenge will receive:

Dr. Bronner’s Organic Liquid Castile Soap
Dr. Bronner’s Organic Magic Balm
Naturepedic Organic Kapok & Cotton Pillow
Moso Natural Moso Bag for Fridge
Ever Bamboo Room Deodorizers

NaturOli Soap Nuts
Skoy Scrubber
Skoy Cloths
Natural Value Facial Tissues