Plastic-Free Road Map – how did we get here?
A ROADMAP FOR ASPIRING COMMUNITY GROUPS
- Seek out the support of like-minded citizens. Gather them together and talk.
- Search out “successful” organizations and solicit information from them.
- Define your objectives: e.g. plastic reduction. Small steps and doable projects attract support. Solving the global climate issue is a seemingly impossible task but changing behaviour in a home that impacts climate change is in itself, rewarding. Plan a public event and invite a high-profile speaker for encouragement and inspiration.
- Engage media. Get your work recognized locally and provincial and national coverage will follow. The media is looking for examples of success to go with the scary data.
- Early engage with young people is critical. Society pays more attention to their efforts than to “old folks”.
- Determine needs of group – Do you have people in your group who are proficient with media? with social media? people who are familiar with local businesses? etc. If not, encourage their participation.
- Identify key persons in churches, service clubs, education, etc. so that your support is broad
- Use social media, print media and radio to communicate to the public about your work.
- Be prepared to recognize businesses and individuals that commit to your programme. (window stickers, media, book marks identifying supports etc)
- Invite council but do not depend on them.
- Fund Raise
- Expand on knowledge that you have gathered from others. It is important that when you speak you are able to provide sources for your information. False information destroys your credibility. (e.g. the Great Lakes contain more plastic than the oceans – source: 2 studies by NYU and 5 Gyre Institute)
- Seek out national and international bodies such as Council of Canadians (Blue Community Project). Surfers Against Sewage. Recognition is important.
- Be patient. Despite the merits of your programme, you will meet deniers.
- Don’t waste your time defending your cause to deniers.
- Be succinct in your presentations particularly to governments at all levels. Point form presentations no longer than 1 page.
- Pictures worth a thousand words.
- Be sure everyone on your team has a responsible role.
- Be passionate and have the courage to show it.
- Acknowledge first nations people at all events. It is their land.
- Keep in touch with like-minded groups.
- Take the time to celebrate your efforts and successes.
- Keep in touch with other likeminded groups. (Bayfield has 20 + spinoff communities)
Blue Bayfield Believes that a Healthy Lake Begins on Land.
Blue Bayfield is an organization of concerned citizens located in the beautiful village of Bayfield, Ontario. Blue Bayfield’s mission is to reduce the use of disposable plastics and prevent plastic and pollutants from entering our Great Lake and waterways.
Blue Bayfield is responsible for installing multiple water bottle refilling stations throughout the village, providing a mobile water unit at events and locations where no potable water is available, hosting and participating in beach and park clean ups, educating the local community on this important topic and encouraging action!
Blue Bayfield works alongside many other local community groups, businesses and government to help create a sustainable environment from land to lake.