Project Green Challenge Expecting Thousands

20110926-102137.jpgHearing the word “green” makes some cringe at the thought of stinky hippies who love the earth and peace but not deodorant. Times they are-a-changin’. The new faces of “green” are your neighbors, your children and the leaders in your community. Green consumers are no longer the tree-hugging 1970′s stereotype and are making big changes from car choices to product consumption.

September 28th is “Green Consumer Day”, a day dedicated to building awareness about the importance of recycling, reusing and reducing. A great idea…but one day is hardly enough. Change is made over time, step-by-step toward the greater purpose and committing to small changes daily is how lifestyle changes occur. I recently had the pleasure of sitting down with Andria Kern, the Project Coordinator for Teens Turning Green (TTG), to discuss their mission and upcoming Project Green Challenge.

Teens Turning Green is a youth-led non-profit devoted to education and advocacy around environmentally and socially responsible choices for individuals, schools, and communities. “We seek to promote global sustainability by identifying and eliminating toxic exposures that permeate our lives and threaten public and environmental health.” Students of all ages participate and commit to making changes in their lives and in the community.

Their latest mission? Project Green Challenge. Beginning October 1st, they are devoting the entire month of October to environmental education. The program offers participants one challenge per day to live greener and cleaner. Project Green Challenge, their largest initiative to date, seeks to mobilize high school and college students across the country to green their lifestyles in just 30 days. From October 1 – 30 students who register on will take on one challenge a day, each focused on a specific “green, greener or greenest” action. Each is aimed at building a powerful, diverse and far-reaching movement that inspires youth to transition from conventional to conscious and take small steps that will help sustain a healthy and just world.

Participants will share their responses and experiences on their website, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. Those that complete the 30-day Challenge can apply for the “challenge finals.” 10 finalists will be selected to participate in Green University, a two-day eco-summit held in the Bay Area, California this December.

What began in the Bay Area in 2005 now has a presence at elementary, middle and high schools, universities, and student organizations across the country, as well as a strong virtual platform and media presence. The TTG chapters lead grassroots efforts that aim to raise awareness, encourage behavior change, and lobby for policy that will lessen local and global impact. According to Erin Schrode, 20, Project Green Challenge program director and co-founder of TTG, “YOU can change the world! End of story. Choose an issue, get educated, unite with your peers, spread the word, and take action today. YOU can transform your life, home, school, and community – and thus, make this planet a better place. And environmentally and socially responsible choices in lifestyle, schools, and communities is a brilliant place to begin.”

TTG is expecting tens of thousands of students throughout the country to take the Project Green Challenge and go from conventional to conscious in just 30 days. This week and next, I will be sharing more green with you in hopes of inspiring more people to take the challenge. Stay posted and have a great Monday!

For additional information on Teens Turning Green or Project Green Challenge, please visit:

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