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No Earthly Idea What To Do for Earth Day?

No Earthly Idea What To Do for Earth Day?

by the Team of the Southwest Florida Community Foundation

What on earth do you plan to do in honor of Earth Day this week?  While the official Earth Day is April 22, our foundation team has been pondering this question since March.

As a team we’ve had discussions about Earth Day and realized together that there is so much we could be doing.  The awareness of waste and taking responsibility for it was our collective eureka moment. Sure, we are die-hard recyclers who rinse our containers and pay mind to removing plastic from paper, but that is standard in offices, right? We hope so! If not yours, maybe there is your Earth Day idea.

We have all been thinking of ways to use less, re-use more, cut back, unplug and refine our habits. The ideas have been flowing like water through a straw. Oh wait, straws aren’t necessary and only end up in landfills….and worse, did you know if you don’t use the straw a waitress gives you, it ends up there any way? So, we are learning to say NO thanks to the straw.  That’s just one thing.  Here are others from our team:

For the next 60 days, I commit to turning it off while lathering up in the shower, and turning it back on to rinse off (this is pretty easy in SWFL since it’s so stinking hot most of the time) and turning off the water while I brush my teeth. Use the dishwasher as much as I can – especially for cleaning out recyclables like peanut butter jars. Think of the possibilities! — Kathy

I will be riding my bicycle more on the weekends instead of using my car, especially on Sundays to pick up the newspaper! – Michelle

I take a lot of notes – my goal is to take all of my notes virtually, and not on paper – and, I want to print as little paper as possible. I will also buy a bike with a basket for my grocery store runs!  And, I do this already, but I vow to always pick up any trash I see whenever I go to the beach!!  – Ashley

No more Starbucks cups 😊 Lets all get cute cups we can reuse! – Sydney

I’m with Sydney. – Carolyn

Water bottles! I will stop buying water bottles. Bring my lunch to work, too, to cut back on “takeout” trash.  Also, gardening has always been a hobby of mine and I haven’t replanted my garden after being destroyed by Irma, so I will plant some seeds again in honor of Earth Day. – Malaina

I’m going to:

  • start using the reusable shopping bags for groceries or passing on bags when I really don’t need one for a couple of items
  • kick water bottles once and for all – I don’t use them that often but I had been buying the small ones for my kids lunch boxes. I’m going to get them reusable water bottles that keep stuff cold all day
  • legitimately start gardening – I’m starting with an herb garden though, LOL you know, to assess my skills and go from there…
  • turn the water off when I’m brushing my teeth – I believe I have been told that most of my life and it’s shameful that I don’t but I’m going to commit to doing that
  • turn off lights and unplug appliances when not in use
  • Choose reusable coffee cups for Starbucks runs or in my case Starbucks, Dunkin, 7-11, Wawa – Whoever has the GOD juice when I NEED IT
  • Finally, and don’t laugh, but if we decide on a three-wheeled bike with a basket for our new bike share program ,I’ll totally ride that for coffee or errands instead of driving my car. – Kim

I’m going to commit on the Starbucks cups. I’m pretty good about reusable stuff but quickly became addicted to ordering my beverages online. The straws kill me, too!  I’m remembering it’s important to check myself because it’s easy to fall into the trap of convenience at the expense of the planet. No shame in expressing weakness or shortfalls/falling off the wagon. There’s always time to do better – repeating that to myself over and over!  – Tessa


I’m going to share a few, in case I actually stick to one…

  • I will actually eat my leftovers instead of throwing them away.
  • I have to stop this bad habit of water bottles (it gets worse after work). I will start with my tennis sessions.
  • My patio is completely empty. I think I will grow a plant. Stay tuned for progress updates.
  • Maybe online shop more instead of driving to store. I don’t do much shopping, so this may be too easy.
  • I’m going to take the LeeTran to work starting September 2018 at least once per week.   -Luis

I am saying farewell to disposable straws-  Sarah 

I am guilty of making multiple trips to grocery stores throughout a week. Every Saturday, I will start planning meals for the coming week and stick to 1-2 store trips per week. Car lines are not only time consuming, but also a great waste of gas so my kids will start riding a school bus to and from school. At our home, we will install window awnings and shades to reduce wasting energy on AC.  I will also stop ordering paper towels in bulk and will only have a few rolls for cleaning.  – Marina

If these ideas aren’t enough, or even if they are, we invite you to engage with us at and take the Earth Day poll. Choose 3 things you can do this year in honor of Earth Day, and we will send you a little something for joining the tribe.


The Southwest Florida Community Foundation, founded in 1976, cultivates regional change for the common good through collective leadership, social innovation and philanthropy to address the evolving community needs in Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry and Glades counties. The Foundation partners with individuals, families and corporations who have created more than 400 philanthropic funds. Thanks to them, the Foundation invested $5.4 million in grants and programs to the community. With assets of $115 million, it has provided more than $71 million in grants and scholarships to the communities it serves since inception. The Foundation is the backbone organization for the regional FutureMakers Coalition and Lee County’s Sustainability Plan. Currently, the Southwest Florida Community Foundation’s regional headquarters are located off College Parkway in South Fort Myers, with satellite offices located on Sanibel Island, in LaBelle (Hendry County) and downtown Fort Myers. For more information, call 239-274-5900 or visit


For more information about the Southwest Florida Community Foundation, call 239-274-5900 or visit


Southwest Florida Community Foundation
Southwest Florida Community Foundation

Our ambition is a more vibrant community that will continually address the evolving community needs in Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry and Glades counties in Southwest Florida. We invite you to join our family and invest in the community with us!