Many of the materials delivered for the build day are wrapped in packaging, which means that Build Day generates a small mountain of materials that can potentially be recycled. As you work on securing a dumpster for the Build Day, try to secure recycling bins as well.
While it's often easier to secure donations of bottled water for your volunteers, that leaves thousands of empty plastic bottles at the end of the day! We have discovered a number of water bottle solutions over the years that will benefit the environment:
Appoint a committee to research and organize the environmental initiative, from finding recycling bins to appointing build captains to lead the effort on the build site!
Make it a service learning project: Give it to the kids! Researching, organizing and implementing the recycling and reusing program on the build site is an incredible opportunity for any older kids at your organization to help throughout the day and learn about environmental issues.
Partnering with other local organizations: Organizations such as Keep America Beautiful or city volunteer Clean Teams are often willing to help plan for and oversee the program on Build Day.
Providing encouragement throughout the day: Don't forget to make announcements throughout the day, especially at the kickoff ceremony, about the recycling that will be taking place on site. It's great to encourage the volunteers with statistics on how they're minimizing their environmental impact!
KABOOM! offers a wide variety of enhancement projects, many of which involve planting trees, flowers and other garden plants. Choose projects that work for your site and benefit the environment! A community garden can also be a great way to teach children lessons about caring for our world.
Rainwater collection systems: If you decide to plant a garden on your playground site, don't forget about using rainwater to keep it green and happy! With just a few common materials, you can add a rainwater collection system to an existing building or shade structure.
Composting: If you decide to plant a garden on your playground site, especially a community garden, a compost bin can help ensure its long-term success. This is also a great way to reuse paper and food waste from your Build Day as you can use these to get your compost started.