STORIES OF THOSE CHANGING THE WORLD
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Saving The Ganga
Sumair Handa Bakshi
Sumair Handa Bakshi is an 18-year-old philanthropist and founder of organization Save The Spirit of The Sea, aimed at preserving aquatic life. His journey started at a very young age at the banks of the River Ganga in Haridwar. There, he witnessed extreme amounts of pollution, while becoming aware that incredible wildlife such as river dolphins live in the polluted river.
This led him to start “Save The Spirit of The Ganga” in 2019, where he has created a movement to inspire citizens to join hands in protecting the River Ganga and her species. He has been honored with the support and blessings of various world leaders, ministers, celebrities, scientists, business leaders, and organizations in this effort, including H.H Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, the Ministry of Jal Shakti, Yuvraj Singh, and Bhumi Pednekar. He aims to project this cause onto a global platform, showcasing every aspect that the Ganga represents to India and the world.
Foster Green Association
Foster Green Association’s mission is to strive for environmental conservation and management through tree growing, wildlife advocacy, and climate literacy to the young generation and the society. Planting trees is one of their main activities, and they have planted over 5,000 trees in Kenya.
Transfo Green World
For Earth Day 2021, Transfo Green World planted trees and bamboo in places that have been affected by landslides. Their passionate and dedicated team truly knows what it means to Restore Our Earth.
Plastic and People
Futuresavers Development Initiative
In commemoration of the Earth Day, Futuresavers Development Initiative held up placards to sensitize and educate people in the streets of Lagos, Nigeria about plastic pollution.
Olubunmi Faniyan, who is part of Futuresavers and works in the health sector, sees people frequently having dangerous chemicals in their bloodstream due to plastic pollution. Olubunmi figured that many people are not aware of the adverse effects plastic can have on us, and believes that we can have a plastic-free environment for the sake of our health.
Allies of the Environment
Green Janitors Sustainable Initiative
For Earth Day 2021, Green Janitors Sustainable Initiative organized a webinar on climate and environmental literacy. The goal was to help educate community youth about it, to change their mindset toward the environment and to raise environmentally responsible youth. Based in Lagos, Nigeria, Green Janitors are environmental allies that show up wherever they suspect danger for the environment.
Students Versus Plastic
In February 2021, Aquaworld led a school outreach program to mitigate plastic pollution in Akure, Ondo state, Nigeria. Aquaworld Timeout Members visited Olufumilayo schools to sensitize their students about ocean and plastic pollution and to include them in the global movement seeking solutions to these crises.
Home Energy Challenge
The Center for the Advancement of Sustainable Energy at James Madison University
The Center for the Advancement of Sustainable Energy is hosting an at-home energy challenge for Earth Day until May 7. Interested participants can make a plan to save energy this month for the chance to enter a raffle for prizes.
Discover the Sustainable Development Goals
Conscious Fashion Campaign
Discover the SDGs – To Make Peace With Nature, convened by the Conscious Fashion Campaign in collaboration with the United Nations Office for Partnerships and supported by Arch & Hook, bluesign, Lenzing and TIPA, is a virtual educational experience to accelerate climate action and ambition from the global fashion industry.
Attendees of the digital hub browsed documentaries, podcasts and short films from United Nations agencies, environmental organizations and fashion initiatives; interactive digital booths about initiatives and innovations confronting the global climate crisis; fashion-related informational tools; and an Earth Day booth!
Clean Energy Dialogue
Eco Club Bangladesh (The Earth Needs Love)
For Earth Day 2021, Eco Club Bangladesh (The Earth Needs Love) held a webinar on Clean Energy, A Step Towards Earth Restoration in collaboration with EARTHDAY.ORG. The webinar focused on the importance of clean energy to achieve more sustainable development in both our economy and environment. Eco Club Bangladesh thinks that we need to focus more on using renewable sources and green technologies to protect the local environment and human health. We need to achieve all the targets of the seventh Sustainable Development Goal: affordable and clean energy.
Youth Dialogue for Earth
Eco Club Pakistan (The Earth Needs Love)
The Earth Needs Love held a Youth Dialogue on Earth Day 2021 in partnership with EARTHDAY.ORG. Environmental and climate activists, students, researchers, sustainable development goal advocates and the general public discussed climate and environmental literacy.
Cinema Verde Environmental Film and Arts Festival
Cinema Verde International Environmental Film and Arts Festival, based in Florida, celebrated its 12th annual festival online this year. It launched a Cinema Verde Channel on Earth Day 2021, so more people could learn about environmental issues and be mobilized to find sustainable solutions.
My Planet My Pledge
Earth Day Oregon
Earth Day Oregon believes that Earth Day is every day. Their statewide campaign amplifies the organizations working year-round to create peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future. They challenged their community to help drive change by making a personal pledge to the planet for Earth Day 2021. A pledge is any one action, big or small, that works to advance one or more of the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Once participants identified a pledge, they wrote it down, took a photo and posted it to social media with the hashtag #MyPlanetMyPledge.
Decorate Nature With Green
Volunteer Youth Organization
Together with our partner, Volunteer Youth Organization, we organized a campaign to plant trees to Restore Our Earth. We organized an event in Read Foundation School in the Hattian District of Aazd Kashmir to raise awareness and distribute 300 plants among students. They were motivated to plant a tree and contribute to Restoring Our Earth. 15 volunteers from Volunteer Youth Organization also participated in the event and the Divisional Forest Officer gave a demo to students on how to plant the trees.
Trees for a Good Cause
Piedmont Environmental Council
In recognition of last year’s Earth Day theme of climate action, Piedmont Environmental Council in Virginia partnered with Friends of the Rappahannock and gave away 300 native trees to Fauquier County, Virginia residents in the days leading up to Earth Day. Taking into account federal and state guidance about social distancing, we opted to make direct deliveries to each participant’s home. This opportunity allowed individuals to make a positive impact in their own backyard while contributing to the larger conservation cause.
Social Distance Cleanups
Hermitage Elementary School
Because we had to cancel the events scheduled for the week of April 22, 2020, we created Social Distance Cleanups beginning October 12, 2020. We used grant money from EARTHDAY.ORG to purchase enough reusable bags, reusable gloves and grabbers to create 15 cleanup kits. We also purchased a couple of hand scales to weigh the collected trash.
Families sign up for a cleanup kit, pick it up at school and then choose a spot to cleanup. They return the kits and bring the trash to school for us to weigh and dispose of properly. In just the first two weeks, we distributed eight kits and disposed of 50+ pounds of trash.
The cleanups are starting off well and we hope they continue to grow. The children enjoy cleaning up and they are learning how trash affects ocean life. They will be more responsible about litter and make a difference in their community.
Climate Action Kits
Community Climate Collaborative
Thanks to a grant from EARTHDAY.ORG, Community Climate Collaborative (C3) worked with the Virginia Discovery Museum and City of Promise to deliver climate action activity kits to families and youth in need of extra support during virtual learning. The kit contains a scavenger hunt about household energy use, a leaf-scratching art project, art materials to design reusable bags and recycled vegetable toys.
“These kits not only equip parents with fun activities to do at home, they also help our children take ownership of their environment. Learning about climate pollution and actively participating in tasks to do their part is so much more meaningful than reading about it in a book. It will become part of a routine and help families create healthy home energy practices!” – Ashley Howard, Early Childhood Coordinator, City of Promise
An Earth Day 2020 Message from Brazil
One of our honorary partners in South America for Earth Day 2020 was ABRASOFFA, a non-profit organization with an OSCIP title and special consultative status from ECOSOC-UN. Its projects focus on culture, folklore and traditions, social, educational development, civics and social inclusion. Headquartered in Santos Brazil, it has an international presence in several countries in Latin America.
Their in-person events were temporarily postponed or changed to digital events to comply with current pandemic regulations. Among their many national and international digital events, one in particular gathered our attention for its message of culture, art and folklore as well as the importance of being an inclusive community against climate change and the protection of our environment.
Its members Bernardo Zamari Diogo and Valentina Zamari Diogo championed this beautiful and creative message for Earth Day 2020 by calling for action on climate change.