As we are all aware the planet we live on urgently needs our help to ensure that it is still functioning for our offspring and their future generations. We can do this in lots of ways and teaching ourselves and our kids a few easy things to do can also be loads of fun! Here are some simple ideas to try out with your motley crew.
1. Bin the clutter
Resolve to get rid of as much stuff as you can by taking an honest look at what you have stashed away and never really use. If you don’t want it or don’t need it pass it on to someone who does – it’s that simple. Schools,charity shops and homeless shelters are great places to start. Unwanted gifts, outgrown clothing and all the bits and pieces you have hidden away for the car boot that you never get round to doing will be really appreciated by someone else. As the saying goes “One man’s junk is another man’s treasure”.
Set yourself a challenge to reduce your household rubbish by at least 50% or even more if you can – you will be surprised how easy this small step is once you get your head around it. There are loads of recycling bins and centres around town these days including outside supermarkets and in schools where you can safely get rid of your plastic, glass and tins as well as clothing and shoes so no excuses allowed! Water can be recycled too if you collect rainwater or bath water to water the garden, clean the patio or even wash the car.
3. Save energy and save yourself money
Get the family on board with the idea of using less water by introducing a timer to the bathroom or shower. Set the kids a challenge to beat the clock and earn themselves reward points or even penalty points with weekly treats or extra chores on the cards. Add penalty points for lights left on or taps left running and see just how fast they get on board with this idea. Change over to Green energy using solar panels and power from wind farms to save the planet and your bank account.
4. Make do and mend!
Just like our grannies used to in the old days when things were scarce and money was tight. Because there is more disposable income around and products can be bought relatively cheaply nowadays we have become so used to throwing stuff out instead of fixing it. Put together a family friendly make do and mend kit with some useful bits like glue, paint brushes, sandpaper and strong tape…fixing stuff really can be great fun and very rewarding.
5. Use less plastic
Plastic is not biodegradable and will stay around forever and a day if discarded, causing dangers and problems to humans and wildlife alike. Try to choose products with no or minimal packaging when you go out shopping. Fresh fruit and veg taste so much better and remove the need for plastic trays and film wrapping. Don’t buy bottled water, it is a really bad idea for the planet.
6. Be conscious of how you travel
One of the ways we make the most impact on the environment is by travelling. Think about whether you would prefer a more eco-friendly vehicle with lower emissions, or whether getting public transport or other means of transport. There’s lots of information out there if you’re not sure what your current impact is, to help you get about in a way that’s kinder to the planet.