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Eco18

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A great piece by Eco18 on Project Green Challenge… and the momentum just keeps on growing! Are you ready for Oct 1!?

Students Lead 30-Day Eco-Challenge

College students participate in the Project Green Challenge and green up their lives by talking on landlines, using reusable water bottles, eating organic and keeping track of all their green efforts on the back wall. Image provided by Project Green Challenge.

On October 1st, Teens Turning Green (TTG) will launch a challenge for high school and college students to green up their lives for 30 days. Project Green Challenge (PGC) will run through the entire month of October, giving participants 30 simple steps to make living a green life as easy and fun as possible.

“The Challenge aims to raise awareness about conscious living, informed consumption, and the collective impact of individual actions, as well as empower students with actionable steps for their own lives,” said Erin Schrode, 20, Project Green Challenge Program Director and Co-Founder of TTG. “In one short month, you‘ll not only change your life, but help sustain the planet too.”

Each day, participants can choose to accept the “green, greener or greenest” challenge. The greener you go, the better chance you have to win prizes up for grabs each day throughout the month, but if you don’t have a lot of time to complete an action one day, you can choose the “green” option. Challenges will cover a myriad of green topics including fitness, food, decorating, gardening, fair trade, wellness, technology, style and basically anything else green-related you can think of. Along with a new challenge, each day participants will receive eco-tips, facts and resources to help them on their eco-journey.

“I have been a part of Teens Turning Green for four years, and with Project Green Challenge we are reaching students across the entire nation, which is truly amazing,” said Brooke, Senior at Tam High. “Our goal is to help others learn how easy it can be to green their lives – one day at a time.”

At the end of the month, participants can submit an application with a video sharing their experience throughout Project Green Challenge and 10 finalists will be chosen to participate in an eco-summit in San Francisco called Green University. These 10 finalists will also receive a Raleigh bicycle, $100 gift card to Whole Foods Market, year’s worth of Nature’s Path snacks, swag from The Container Storeand many other prizes.

One grand prize winner, chosen by an elite panel of judges at the Green University, will also take home a $5,000 scholarship, $1,000 gift card to Whole Foods Market, $1,000 to spend at The Container Store an eco-style makeover and much, much more. Do yourself a favor and check out the prize page for the full list.

“Project Green Challenge has created a fun and easy way to involve high school and college students in being green,” said Ellen Spurgeon, Campus Representative, Chief and Director of Sustainability for Indiana University’s student government. “It has been encouraging to see the enthusiasm across Indiana University’s campus to participate in the movement toward a greener lifestyle.”

Over 1,000 people across the US have already signed up. This challenge is open to people of all ages, though only high school and college students are eligible to win the finalist and grand prize packages. To register for the Project Green Challenge, or just to see if anyone else at your school is involved, visithttp://www.projectgreenchallenge.com.

Looking for passion and enthusiasm?

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We are loving this piece on Celebrate Green all about PGC and more! They really do “put the meaning in the greening.”

3 question interview: Erin co-founder of Teens Turning Green

by Lynn and Corey

Remember when a huge auditorium wasn’t big enough to contain your passion and enthusiasm? If you’ve lost some of that, time to find it again. And the best place to look could be toward young people like Erin Schrode, 20, Project Green Challenge program director and co-founder of Teens Turning Green.

Erin, along with her mother, TTG founder and executive director Judi Shils, and 15 TTG interns from around the country spent the last four months developing the concept for Project Green Challenge, an online initiative that seeks to engage high school and college students across the country and inspire them to transition “from conventional to conscious,” via a 30-day green lifestyle challenge.

So if you live with teens or young adults, or know some, encourage them to join the the fun and live Project Green Challenge’s tagline, “from conventional to conscious in 30-days.” This is something that could impact them (and ultimately the planet), for the rest of their lives

1. What sorts of steps are included? Which ones do you expect students will jump into and which will be a little less likely for them to initiate?

Each of the thirty days will have a theme, ranging from water to organic food, energy to personal care, sustainable apparel to exercise, recycling to advocacy, and much more. Some are very specific, take organic cotton for an example — delving into the environmental and social consequences of the plethora of products we use daily that are made from cotton. The home/dorm/space challenge is multifaceted and takes a more holistic approach, encouraging people to assess their surroundings and its many elements.

Advocacy is much more meta—a mindset shift. So we have a wide range of themes and entry points, which we hope will appeal to the masses. No matter what your interest, background, focus in life, there are Challenges that will have specific relevance. Some, like healthy food or switching from single use to reusable items, are familiar topics, top of mind, in the media—and therefore may be more easily embraced, while others will be entirely new, venturing into uncharted territories. Both of those options excite us and our audience!

There will be a “green challenge” that participants are asked to complete, with specifics tasks/actions/deliverables. If people want to delve deeper, there are daily “greener” and “greenest” levels, with prizes to incentivize engagement. After the 30 days, participants will have the chance to apply for the Challenge Finals, a two-day fun and educational eco extravaganza in San Francisco in December. Ten will then be selected and flown to SF, receiving great prizes packages and the chance to interact with and hear from esteemed leaders and competing for the grand prize as Challenge champion. Prize info is on our website, if you want to take a look.

2. How did you come up with the challenges? Were students included in putting them together?

I led a team of fifteen interns this summer, working tirelessly to develop challenges based upon what was relevant and interesting to our demographic: high school and college students. We had a ball dreaming up ideas and refining them! We have not merely had input or approval in the process, rather we have been leading it every step of the way, in collaboration with leading experts in the each of the fields. This is a true collaboration, and forging partnerships with NGOs, media outlets, and corporations/businesses has been integral to our success. We tap into all of those vast knowledge and content bases, so as to not reinvent the wheel. Project Green Challenge is of youth, by youth, for youth — that you can be sure of!

3. What kind of lasting impact do you expect the challenge to have?

I want to shift the mindset of my generation, to be that spark, the impetus that spurs a transition from conventional to conscious. I know from personal experience with my friends that when a person starts thinking critically, begins to incorporate green and ethical practices into the everyday, it extends into all aspects of one’s lifestyle, school, community, etc. You can’t stop!! This is what I dream of — a world of conscious citizens who speak up, speak out when they see injustice, and are active in bringing about the change that we so desperately need in our world. I have faith in my peers; if we establish patterns of responsibility now, as the future consumer base, voting block, industry leaders, parents, and more, we can shift the paradigm.

Project Green Challenge is powered by Natracare. Lead sponsors include Whole Foods Market, Nature’s Path, The Container Store, Seventh Generation, Replenish, Kejriwal, Steelcase and Swisspers with support from Juice Beauty, Burt’s Bees, PeopleTowels, Annie’s, and New Leaf Paper.

Non Profit Partners: 350.org, Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, Cradle to Cradle Institute, Eco to Go, Ecomom Alliance, Environmental Media Association (EMA), Fair Trade USA, Global Action Through Fashion, Green Schools Initiative, Green Chamber of Commerce, Healthy Child Healthy World, Non GMO Project, NRDC, One Young World, Pesticide Watch, The Lunch Box, The Schoolbag, Women’s Voices for the Earth

Media Partners: Coco Eco Magazine, DrGreene.com, EcoFabulous.com, EcoMom.com, EcoStiletto.com, GoodGuide.com, Gorgeously Green, GretaGuide.com, Natural Health Magazine, PracticallyGreen.com, TakePart.com

Lynn Colwell and Corey Colwell-Lipson are mother and daughter and authors of  Celebrate Green! Creating Eco-Savvy Holidays, Celebrations and Traditions for the Whole Family, and founders of Green Halloween®.