So you want to change the world. The most important step in wanting to do this, is consistency. Showing up regularly makes all the difference. It is one of the driving forces behind change occurring. There are many ways to invoke change. I have listed below 8 ways that we can begin to change the world. Select one or a few of the points I have shared and regularly perform those actions. For me, writing is how I make a change. I enjoy researching facts, sharing statistics, and giving other people’s story a spotlight. And so, every Thursday I show up on my blog and share those ways hoping that it will provide people with the tools and resources they need to start or continue on a joinery of change making.
8 ways To Change The World:
Your money acts as your voice. What you buy ultimately has power of you, our communities, and the earth. Is your money endorsing corporations that are responsible for destroying eco-systems? Or, is your money supporting wildlife, restoring initiatives, and contributing to more sustainable practices? Shopping ethically is a great way to make a lasting change and immediacy impact the world. If you’re unsure about the status of the brands you purchase from, Google the company and research their sustainability, sourcing, and employment report. Look to see what their plan is for responsibly producing the items you purchase from them. If they are not transparent about it, they most likely are not prioritizing fair working conditions or the environment.
Voice Your Concern
Don’t keep things to yourself. If you are unhappy about the recycling program in your town, how your favorite business uses materials that are harmful to the environment, or you want a certain bill to be passes, use your voice. There are many ways to do this. Change.org often has petitions which is a first wave of activism in campaigns. Sign the petitions and keep communicating that you want a change. Write a letter to the president. You can view a letter template on this post here along with the White House address. Call your representatives and research how your government provides opportunities for you to speak to the policymakers. Then, follow through and create those lines of dialogue with them. Invite others into your cause and ask them to also contribute. The more people you have vocalizing change, the greater a chance of change occurring.
Call The Government
Amnesty International provides guidelines on who to call, what to say, and when to make your voice heard. They offer education on current world issues and human rights issues. Browse their website and see how you can get involved in their mission of writing and calling government officials to make an immediate and lasting change.
Use Social Media
As we’ve seen with the BLM movement, social media can be used for incredibly amounts of good. Social media helps us to reach millions of people we will never be able to meet in our lifetime. Social media helps us to spread our message, communicate with others who are searching for answers and next steps. Start an Instagram page, YouTube channel, film TikTok videos, or start a blog––if you really want to, do it all! Ask friends and family members to share your online posts and watch how the information you’re posting travels to others. There are many justice accounts providing information. Be sure yours is factual and spreading accurate news and updates or this will lead to more harm than good.
Organize and Participate in Community Events
Despite being in a global pandemic there are ways we can still gather safely. Zoom and other remote communication platforms allow us to hold meetings and events with people all over the world. Gather friends, family, co-workers, community members, etc. and ask them to join a volunteer event. You can plan out ways each of you will do something for your community and bounce ideas off of each other. This can also be a time to share resources like organizations making a change, policy you want to challenge, and things to celebrate that have already began to change. Then, when it’s safe again and the CDC announces we can all gather without limitation or health consequences, coordinate in person volunteer days. Beach clean up, gardening, tree planning, and lobbying are some of the most popular ways to advocate and invite others into the group that you may see in the area you’re gathering.
Digital volunteer saw a massive spike during the pandemic. There are many nonprofits and organizations accepting remote volunteers. The Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust, Amnesty International, and The United Nations are three major players who have digital volunteer positions available pretty regularly throughout the year and offer flexibility with scheduling.
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Decrease Your Food Waste
Learn to compost and connect with your community’s recycling program. Learn about which materials your town accepts and does not accept. Does the recycling you put in the general recycling bin every week make it to the facility? I’ve heard stories of people who have learned that the items they were recycling and putting at the curb were unable to be recycled at the general facility––and so, the recycling in the collected bin was not broken down properly according to those material’s needs. In your case, it’s best to be sure that you are putting the recyclable materials in the bin that can actually be recycled. For the materials that may not be recycled in the general pickup, inquire about your town’s recycling facility or the closest one to you. Ask them which materials they accept and when their drop off hours are. Then, based on this information, sort trash and recyclables according. Some recycling facilities off specialty pickup for an additional yearly fee. If you do not have a vehicle or are unable to drive, this is well worth the price.
Start Your Movement
If you feel like your cause isn’t given the spotlight and resources needed to make a change, start your own movement. Non-profits, social enterprises, and digital campaigns are three of the ways you can take responsibility for organizing people, information, and steps to bring about change. Generation Distinct is my friend Hannah Gronowski’s organization that equips people with the tools needed to start their own movement. They offer cohorts, mentoring sessions, and online support to ensure you know how to champion your cause.