By Gretchen Pahia
Typically, we celebrate the Earth on Earth Day in April. But November has a day of its own to celebrate our world and ways to keep it clean. November 15 is America Recycles Day, and it gives everyone a time to think about how to make the Earth a better place. There is no shortage of things we need to do as humans to protect our planet. Pollution, carbon emissions, and littering all make an impact on our world.
Today, people often live like they are a disposable society, throwing away things without thinking of the long-lasting impact. When it comes to fashion, retailers are pushing to their customers the “must-have” pieces or accessories for the season. However, did you know this also comes at a cost to the environment? Each person in the United States throws away 80 pounds of clothes in landfills every year. Also, two out of every ten items donated to charity are used, and the remaining items end up in landfills or incinerators.
In a world of fast fashion, changing trends and styles, people end up wearing pieces for a short time and then discarding clothes that are still perfectly fine to wear. There is help out there, thanks to stores like locally owned and operated Kid to Kid and Uptown Cheapskate. Kid to Kid and Uptown Cheapskate buy, sell and trade current styles in trusted brands and famous designer names to customers. Shoppers not only save about 70 percent off retail prices, but they are also working to be kinder to the planet.
Shoppers at retail stores like these can also sell their own items for store credit and cash. Unlike other consignment stores where a customer will get a percentage of the sale after the fact, resale store customers who sell their gently-used items can get cash at the register or 20 percent more in store credit. Using this method is a great way to help customers.
Shopping at an environmentally beneficial store allows consumers to be not only socially conscientious, but also help deserving charities. Clothing and items that aren’t sold are donated to a number of charities, helping to complete the upcycling circle.
Gretchen Pahia has 15 years of experience in both media and public relations and is an award- winning television news producer in Phoenix, Las Vegas and Portland. Gretchen is a native to Arizona, born and raised in Phoenix, and a graduate of Northern Arizona University. She lives in the Phoenix metro area with her husband, their two children and their dog.
LOOK FOR OTHER OPPORTUNITIES TO RECYCLE
PEPSICO RECYCLE RALLY
Your school can win at recycling! Whether your school is already a recycling champion or you see an opportunity for creating positive change, PepsiCo Recycling can help. Schools of all sizes can download free resources, track their progress, earn rewards and compete to win prizes of up to $1,000. If you think your school is ready to step up its efforts, encourage your champions to sign up for the Challenge League, which offers the opportunity to win up to $20,000 in prizes.
Signing your school up for the Recycle Rally program costs nothing and gives you and your school access to numerous tools and resources to meet your recycling goals. Any adult at your school can sign up, and it’s easy to add others or designate a different point of contact after your account is established. Rewards and prizes can be based either on the mixed bag count method (Universal League) or the weighing tally method (Challenge League). You can enroll your school in the program at any time throughout the year.
KEEP AMERICA BEAUTIFUL RECYCLE-BOWL
Keep America Beautiful offers schools the opportunity to enroll in their annual Recycle-Bowl program. Program enrollment begins in August, and the competition culminates on November 15, America Recycles Day. Every year, the program awards a recycled park bench and $1,000 to purchase recycling bins to the national winner. The most improved division winner receives $1,500 to purchase recycling bins.
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