Earth Day is almost upon us. But Sunshine Retirement Living communities have already been actively taking part in efforts to benefit our beautiful blue planet. For our 3rd Annual Go Green Give Back month, every resident has been given a flyer with practical tips on “How to ReThink your Routine” and practice more sustainable habits.
They’ve also received a “Pledge to Go Green” card, which includes green footprints, that represent four earth-friendly categories: reduce, reuse, recycle and give back. When residents do something beneficial in one of the four categories – like carpooling, shopping with reusable bags, and properly disposing of used batteries and light bulbs – they get their card punched. When all four footprints are punched, they will be recognized and awarded a green prize. It may sound a bit like 4thgrade. But hey, that’s where we all did our best learning.
It’s also just the tip of the iceberg in terms of Earth Day/Earth Month happenings. Many communities have been organizing activities like art & craft programs with recycled materials, garage/rummage sales, workshops to eliminate junk mail, planting projects, eye-glass donation drives and “dark hours” when all electronic devices are turned off.
For instance, on April 1, residents at Creekside Pines in Dallas, Georgia collected more than 50 pairs of eye glasses and passed them on to South Cobb Lion’s Club, which works with local optometrists to provide glasses for the needy. Lion’s International clubs see their way to offer this service in communities throughout the country.
“I love how our residents get excited about the “Go Green” activities every spring,” says Julie Groom, Activities Director at Creekside Pines in Dallas, Georgia. “Seniors have been enjoying life on earth the longest. So they really see themselves as stewards protecting it for future generations.”
Giving back to the earth starts at home
The folks at Creekside Pines are very busy with “give back” activities this month. Their annual Relay for Life event raised nearly $1,000 for the American Cancer Society. Their Ladies Club commemorated 911 Dispatch Appreciation Month by delivering peach muffins, orange juice and jelly beans to the local dispatch center. They’ve also visited former residents who are going through tough times at nursing homes, rehab facilities and assisted-living communities.
Coming up on Saturday, April 22, Creekside Pines will partner with a local business called, I love my geek, to collect unwanted computers and electronic devices. March 4 Tech, I love my geek’s non-profit organization, will then use them to teach under-privileged youth the ins and out of the computer design and repair.
And finally, on Saturday, April 29, Creekside Pines is teaming up with Wellstar Hospital system and Cobb County Police Department for a Medication Take-back, where residents can dispose of any unwanted and/or expired medication.
“Regardless of varying opinions about the environment or the climate, our residents see the value of greener living and giving back to their community,” says Groom. “So we celebrate the earth and take care of it not only on April 22, but every day of the year.”