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Sustainable wellbeing and green living

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Akashinga - Nature Protected by Women

African wildlife is at risk and in need of protection. Over the span of seven years, elephant populations in Africa have decreased by 30% across the continent, mainly due to poaching. Similarly, rhinos are targeted for their valuable horns. Who is protecting African wildlife and how?

Akashinga is Africa’s first armed, all-women anti-poaching unit which is changing the way the issue of poaching is addressed throughout the continent. Instead of combatting poachers with violence, Akashinga uses a community buy-in approach that focuses on educating communities about the economic benefits of preserving Africa’s wildlife.

Akashinga operates in Zimbabwe and relies on strong and powerful women to protect the environment and as a result, empower themselves and their communities.

How it all began

Akashinga was founded in 2017 by the International Anti-Poaching Foundation (IAPF). This foundation was created in 2009 by Damien Mander, an Iraq war veteran who served as a Naval...

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Creating Age-Friendly Communities

Aging is a life-long process that we should embrace and enjoy, not shy away from. However, this can be difficult to do when we live in cities which are designed in a way that tends to exclude the elderly population from being active, social, and properly included in society.

Because this is such a widespread issue, the term “age-friendly” has been developed in order to describe cities and communities that are inclusive of all ages. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), an age friendly city includes policies, services, and structures related to the physical and social environment that support and enable elderly populations to age actively.

“The WHO defines active aging as being able to: live in security, enjoy good health, and continue to participate fully in society.”

This is achieved by making sure that public settings and services are accessible for varying levels of ability. It is no secret that urban areas are often designed with young and...

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What simple trick reduces air pollution and saves money? Idle-Free Zones

Most people are aware of the fact that vehicles have a negative impact on the environment through their use of fossil fuels. Fossil fuels release harmful pollutants such as carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, effectively contributing to global warming. However, what you might not know is that vehicles produce 12% more emissions when idling than they do while driving.

What exactly is idling? Idling is running your engine while your car isn’t moving. If you are a vehicle owner, then there is a good chance you have been guilty of this practice. After all, driving isn’t always an efficient method of transportation. You might often find yourself hitting every red light or getting stuck in traffic.

In fact, there are many reasons why drivers idle.

Why we idle vehicles

One of the main reasons why drivers idle has to do with weather conditions. If you live in a location that suffers from very cold winters or scorching hot summers, you’ll be familiar with the practice of...

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Getting around while being active equals: Active Transportation

Active transportation is any kind of human-powered form of travel! This includes walking, cycling, running, skiing, skating, skateboarding, canoeing, and more.

One of the most popular forms of active transportation is walking due to the fact that it is free and doesn’t require learning a new skill!

Active transportation is a great way to get your body moving and enjoy all the benefits that come with physical exercise. While we may not all have time to hit the gym or schedule in some structured exercise, using different forms of active transportation instead of taking a car or the bus can be just as beneficial health-wise!

Some of the benefits that come with regular physical activity include the release of endorphins, increased energy, improved quality of sleep, improved overall mood, and the prevention of cardiovascular disease, some cancers and diabetes.

In addition, choosing active transportation is great for the environment, as less fossil fuels are used, less...

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Are there alternatives to disposable everyday items? Last Object

If you were to make an inventory of all the single use items you use on a regular basis, how many items would be on your list? (for a refresher on the impact of single use items, check out this blog post!)

If you were to categorize these single use items, would you find that many of them are personal hygiene/care products? If you answered yes, you’re not alone! These types of single use products can be some of the hardest ones to ditch.

If you are just starting out on your zero/low waste journey you might not even be aware that products like reusable cotton swabs exist. Who would have thought?! On the other hand, you might be finding it difficult to find a reusable personal care product that works for you and your needs. After all, what works best for your favourite low waste blogger may not be as great for you.

Whatever the case, investing in good-quality, sustainably produced, and long-lasting personal care products will help you with your journey towards greener living!

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A better way to do business: DIFF eyewear

When it comes to combining practicality with personal expression, glasses are one of those accessories that do both, but what about social impact? Can they accomplish all three? DIFF eyewear is trying to.

In the case of prescription glasses, not only are they necessary for your vision, but they are a fun way to spice up your look and express your personal style, and sunglasses are a fun way to add a little extra something to your outfit while staying safe in the sun.

Now, wouldn’t it be great to purchase your glasses from a company whose social mission is great as well? DIFF Eyewear is an eyewear brand with a high social accountability track record, that I thought you should know about. It is impressive what they are doing, and you know that I love to highlight social enterprises!

DIFF Eyewear

DIFF Eyewear was founded in 2014 and from the onset, had some ambitious social impact goals. All three co-founders, Zach Gordan, Chad Jernigan, and Chad Dime had already been working in...

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Creatives for a Sustainable Future

The title image of this article is from @climateillustrated Illustration by @emmamckhann, telling the story of 12 year old Yola, a youth member of the African Climate Alliance @africanclimatealliance.

Have you heard the saying you can’t spell earth without “art”? Artists and creatives have always helped to shape society by helping us to critically examine who we are and what we value. With environmental issues it is no different, creatives in the visual arts, performing arts, as well as writers, musicians and playwrights give us a new depth of understanding the various faces of topics like climate change, deforestation, ocean pollution, consumerism, loss of biodiversity and so on.

Art moves us

To me, there has always been something moving about the way creatives can bring light to an issue. They often do it in ways that go beyond words, right to my emotional connection to the issue. Or they bring someone’s personal story to me in a way that helps me see the...

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Saving our farmland and wilderness through Brownfield Redevelopment

Cities are constantly changing. New buildings get built, old ones get torn down, and land usage changes over time. You may, however, notice certain plots of land that are underutilized and quite frankly – a bit of an eye sore!

If you aren’t familiar with the term already, a brownfield is a commercial or industrial property that is vacant or underused due to past actions and uses that have caused environmental contamination.

Although there are often concerns about soil and groundwater safety due to the threat of contaminants such as hazardous substances, pollutants, petroleum, or other substances, brownfield sites have the potential for redevelopment or other economic opportunities.

Benefits of redeveloping brownfields

Why should we care about redeveloping and revitalizing brownfields in our cities?

For one, brownfields are often located in prime areas of our towns and cities. Not only does this mean that they are unappealing to look at, therefore degrading the overall...

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The no yard needed composting solution: Vermicomposting

What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of composting?

Do you picture a spacious backyard with an outdoor composting bin situated far from the house? If so, I’m here to let you know that the “traditional” method of backyard composting isn’t the only way to compost!

What if someone else – or more precisely something else- could do most of the composting work for you?

Vermicomposting is a method of composting that involves worms! We know that earthworms are important components of soil health, so why not bring them indoors to work some of their magic on your food scraps? Soon enough, you’ll be left with an amazing fertilizer that can be used in your garden or on your houseplants.

Why composting matters

Before we get into the specifics on vermicomposting, here is a quick review of the benefits of composting.

Your food scraps are organic material that should readily decompose in the landfill, right? Wrong! In order for...

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Why Hockey Guys are helping fight Climate Change

Sometimes the effects of global warming can seem far away or unrelated to your personal life. However, this couldn’t be further than the truth! It is highly likely that wherever you live, you have already been affected by climate change – perhaps without even realizing it.

That unseasonably warm winter you’ve been enjoying? The frequent forest and bush fires? The prehistoric animals being discovered in the melting permafrost? These occurrences aren’t coincidences. They are a result of our changing climate.

Climate change is no longer a distant threat, and people are starting to take notice.

Saving Pond Hockey

Svante, a father of two who lives in Helsinki, Finland, is one of those people who have begun to see the impact that climate change has on his family’s everyday life. In his case, increasing temperatures have started to impact his ability to play ice hockey.

Ice hockey is the number one sport in Finland, and a beloved pastime for Svante and his...

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