Environmental issues define our lifetime. And, this week, we have two stories from our partners. As a result, these stories help explain how other nonprofits can get creative.  So, even if you are not working on issues related to the environment, you too can make a difference. But, before we get started, make sure you’ve looked at the following.  If you’ve missed our recent posts about the environment, you’ll want to check them out.

Any nonprofit can get involved in supporting environmental issues. For instance, one of our stories is about an environmental group. But, the other is about a charity that did a creative fundraiser. And, both show how that effort helps the environment.

Great Swamp Conservancy and the Environment

Great Swamp Conservancy has a vital mission in support of environmental issues. First, they work to support in the Oneida Lake and Lake Ontario regions. In other words, they support the environment, cultural, and natural history of the areas. And, to do this work, they hold events for the public, which includes two bird migration festivals. Also, during those events, artisans and vendors have the chance to showcase their merchandise. Imagine what it must be like to attend with everyone celebrating nature!

The group decided to do a shoe drive fundraiser early in 2019. In short, they wanted to raise money for their education programs on the environment. And, they decided that the way to do it was with a shoe drive fundraiser. The Madison County Courier reported on the excitement. “We are excited about our shoe drive,” said Rusty Patane, assistant director. “We know that most people have extra shoes in their closets… By doing so, we raise money for the various educational programs that we offer, and we have the chance to help families in developing nations who need economic opportunities. It’s a win-win for everyone.”

Step on Poverty Keeping Shoes Out of the Trash

Step on Poverty is another awesome group that helped the environment. And, this nonprofit supports youth through peer programs, mentorship, and economic pragmatism. The nonprofit is unique because of the vision of its young leaders. In other words, a group of high school students affected by resistance decided to do something about it. And, with the creation of Step on Poverty, these young people chose to do their part. Now, they support the youth that comes behind them. Under their guidance, and others, young people are changing old ideas. As a result, they are creating a world worthy of their beliefs, including with the environment.

The young leaders decided to do a shoe drive fundraiser. Thus, they kept more than 9,400 pairs of shoes out of the trash. What happens to the environment when shoes end up in landfills? Well, they are harm health because as they break down, they release toxins into the air. And, that’s not all. For instance, shoes can take decades––even an entire lifetime––to fall apart. In the meantime, it affects human health and the environment. More than 600 million shoes get tossed into landfills each year. We all could do better!

Impacting the Environment and Also People Around the World

In sum, both of these nonprofits helped relieve environmental issues. But, they also supported more than 4,000 micro-entrepreneurs around the world. The small business owners sell the shoes in their communities. In other words, by collecting gently worn, used and new shoes, these charities rethought fundraising with a shoe drive fundraiser. They raised critical funds for their groups. Also, by collecting shoes, they kept it from the trash, which hurts the environment. And, they helped micro-entrepreneurs in developing countries who sell the shoes for their livelihoods. In other words, they achieved a win/win/win.


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