We are going green, right? I am continually working at trying to do my part to help the environment, and I sincerely hope that other’s will be inspired to do their part to help reduce the damage we cause, so I wanted to have a brief conversation with you about sustainable options when planning events. What a great way to celebrate the coming of spring, by thinking of ways to contribute to the healing and preservation of the planet that sustains us in our personal and professional lifestyles?
What are the goals of green and sustainable events?
- Waste reduction
- Education and awareness of various methods and products as alternatives.
- Conserving resources.
- Inspiring change.
- And of course, promotion of content.
How to go green!
Ok, so there are so many ways to make your even green and sustainable. I’m going to give you a few tips to get you started, though.
- Make a plan. Preplan your all needs ( space needed, time of year, food, the audience). You should already be doing this in general to have a productive event, but taking the extra time to go through your plan to pinpoint what you can reduce, change, add or remove to make your event more sustainable can turn out to be a long-term benefit.
- Let everyone know that this is a green inspired event. Have a mission statement that people can take with them. You don’t have to have everything green to be able to make proactive steps toward sustainability. Let your audience know that it is your goal to incorporate sustainable methods in all events and point out various methods your audience can take away and implement that was used during the event.
- Use reusable materials. Water bottles and water stations are a great addition not only to promote sustainable habits as well as advertising but to promote a healthier lifestyle. We consume far too many sugary drinks every day, one or three less at an event can be a step up
- Try remote events that allow for interactive participation. Update: Keep on the lookout for our post on remote speakers.
- Have sustainable food choices ( local, seasonal, whole foods). Please note that the more steps people take toward sustainable foods, the more accessible it becomes financially speaking and regarding acknowledging that there are still many places without access to fresh produce in general.
- Promote alternative transportations. Whether you choose venues close to public transit or hire shuttles to bus people back and forth at specific times or give discounts to people who carpool, there are various ways to promote reducing carbon emissions by vehicles and the damage they cause to the environment. Yes, cars have significantly improved our lives, but we should always be aware of the damage we cause. Here are some places to start in your research:X X
- Look for ways to conserve energy in your event. Work with your venue to find ways to make your venue more sustainable. Choose venues with plenty of natural light, natural decor, and that already has sustainable methods implemented.
- Make as much info in digital format. Create an app or website to house your content ( fliers, booklets, etc.) digitized. There are various programs that you can use to make info accessible to attendees only.
- Donate leftover food. Many people would appreciate the donated food. We often get caught in the mindset that the homeless and people living in poverty are lazy good for nothing, but that is not true. It’s a harmful generalizing that makes it easy to forget compassion. Take a look at these links to help learn how to donate leftovers. X X
- Use caterer that are willing to look into sustainable and creative menus. Also, ask if they have a donation policy for leftover food.
Let’s work together to make sure people know activism is not a dirty word. It is activating and advocating. Let’s work together to protect this planet as long as we can and to have fun doing it. Sustainability does not have to be hard or tedious. It does require compassion.
Let us know your ideas for creating sustainable events.
Shalyse is currently planning and collaborating with Madu Group – Events and Partnerships. MGEP is a company that focuses on utilizing our time to find partnerships between venues, organization, people, and professionals of all type through events. If you are in the DFW Texas area or in need of services in this area, please make inquiries via firstname.lastname@example.org.