Community Engagement - Green Living
Our actions impact the environment. Everything we do can help or hurt our planet in many ways.
Friends of Green Communities has tools to help our communities learn and understand how to reduce environmental footprint.
We engage and commit the communities we support to make a commitment to sustainable living by pledging to incorporate these tips into their everyday routine.
We invite and encourage community members to volunteer their time on Saturdays for a general neighborhood cleaning to keep the community beautiful by organizing environmental clean-ups, and other projects related to enhancing the ecological, economic and social sustainability throughout the community.
Why Children and the youth?
Educating children and the youth about climate change is crucial to promote climate action in these young ones since they are the future custodians of this mother planet we call earth. It helps them understand and address the impacts of the climate crisis the world is facing now, empowering them with the knowledge, skills, values and attitudes needed to act as agents of change.
Lessons that will help the children understand the impact of their carbon footprint and ways they can reduce it with simple actions.
Carbon footprint calculation
One of the simplest ways to introduce carbon footprints to children is to give them a concreate way to interact with the concept whereby children for example are challenged to examine their transportation and eating habits, school and home electricity use and what they recycle and throw away.
During computer time, allow kids to input their habits in each of these categories and see what they come up with. It is advisable to walk students through using the calculator the first time they do it, accompanying each step with explanatory statements. After they’ve calculated their footprint, invite them to try again, this time modifying one category at a time to see how they could most easily reduce their number.
Children can be challenged to brainstorm about how to shrink carbon footprints
After they understand what a carbon footprint is, a good next step is to lead them in a discussion about how people everyday choices impact the environment. On the board or in small groups, invite students to come up with ideas about actions that might contribute to their carbon footprints, such as leaving unused electronics running or buying single-serving drinks and snacks. When children have produced a sufficient number of ideas, have them add alternative actions that lower their carbon footprint.
Produce a carbon footprint poster
Invite students to make individual posters showing an action, or several, that they and their families can take to reduce their carbon load. When the posters are completed, display them in the classroom or hall before sending them home with children.
Carbon footprint checklists
Children love nothing more than telling their families what to do, so sending them home with a carbon checklist for the week is bound to get their attention. Example could include “use a refillable water bottle instead of buying bottled water,” and “Unplug phone chargers when they are not in use.”