Make a financial contribution to an environmental organisation

Whilst we can encourage care for our environment through our individual efforts and spending practices, we can leverage an even greater collective force by financially contributing to a well established environmental organisation. Your financial contribution can help give an environmental organization the resources they need to lobby government and business to make positive and lasting changes. Choose an organisation from The Enviropaedia database.

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Use the intranet to educate and inspire

If your company has an intra-net system, chat to the person in charge of internal communications about adding links to environmental sites like www.enviropaedia.com onto the system. This will make information about environ-mental topics easily accessible, and staff will be able to educate themselves about environmental topics relevant to the business.

Create or join a community food garden

If you live in a fat or a complex, and your small balcony doesn’t offer much room for agricultural production, then seek out like minded people in your area and start a food garden together. Find an appropriate area, seek permission from the relevant people, and then start planning your garden together. The great thing about growing as a community is that you can create a watering and weeding schedule – cutting down the individual workload of weeding and watering.

Become a dog walker

If you are an animal lover, and have some time to spare time on your hands, volunteer at your local animal shelter. Organisations such as the SPCA, DARG and Tears always need people to walk dogs, socialise cats, or just generally help out at the shelter. Dog walking is also great fun, and energising outdoor exercise!

Adopt a homeless animal

Before you go out and buy an expensive, pure bred animal, consider visiting your local animal shelter and meeting some of the pets on their adoption list. Often these well loved animals have been given to the centre by elderly owners who can no longer take care of them, or they have been rescued from unhappy situations. By providing them with a loving home, you can ensure that they are not destroyed. In our experience, SPCA or Tears ‘Specials’ are often healthy, robust and character-flled animals!

Put the environment on your community agenda

If you enjoy the social side of life, then involving yourself in your local community can be a fun way to promote eco- logical sustainability. You might be amazed at how many people share your interest in creating a more sustainable and environmentally friendly ethos for your area, and at how much more you can achieve as a collective group. Action steps could range from organizing environmental talks or film screenings at your community centre or library, or tapping into existing community networks and making sure that they have the environment on their agenda.

Start trading in talents

The Community Exchange System (CES) is a community- based, global trading network that allows us to trade in ‘talents’ instead of money. Through the network you are able to make ‘offerings’ of goods or services that you would like to make available to the community. When people take advantage of your offerings you earn talents, which are then credited to your account. You can use these talents to purchase anything from food and accommodation to an appointment with a doctor. In this way a community currency acts like a supplementary currency, creating an additional stream of value in a community. Sign up today, and start trading!

Write to the newspapers and call into the radio

If you come across an article in the newspaper that inspires, annoys or enrages you, write in with your comments and thoughts. Similarly, become involved with your local talk radio station, and call in to chat about contentious green issues. By making your voice heard you can stimulate debate around key environmental issues, and bring attention to areas that you consider to be of importance.

Vote for the environment

When deciding which political party to vote for in the next regional or national elections, consider each party’s approach to the environment. If the party that you usually support does not have the environment on their agenda, call your local party office, and tell them that this is a real deal-breaker for you. Speak your mind and get involved in the democratic process.

Sign up for Do It Day

Do It Day is one day in the year where you can volunteer for multiple community development projects taking place around the country. Go to www.doitday.co.za to pick a community project.