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NWP Global Registry of Apprentice Ecologists - Royal Green Condominium, Miami, Florida, USA

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Royal Green Condominium, Miami, Florida, USA
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Registered: December 2011
City/Town/Province: Miami
Posts: 1
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Every now and then I might eat a yogurt and throw it away in my trash. Then to quench my thirst I might open a can of Sprite and throw it away in my trash. The bag alone is trash itself. Multiply these cans, yogurt containers, wrappers, paper, and everything else times a very large number; the number of inhabitants that reside in my condominium. Since there are no recycling bins in my condominium I kept plastic bottles in my countertop in a corner because I did not like throwing them away knowing they would not be recycled. Every now and then the bottles piled up and again it was time to do something I loathed: throw them all away so they could be dumped in a place for them to sit in for the rest of the Earth’s existence (less dramatically about hundreds to millions of years…) One day, when my guilt had consumed me entirely, I got the courage to do something about it. so in the summer of 2011, I set my mind to starting a project to set up a recycling program in my condominium.
I was very enthused to attempt to make a difference in the Royal Green Community (in Miami) and also help the environment. From the beginning I knew that it was going to be very difficult to achieve this since my condominium association is very strict and not likely to accept the idea because of various reasons (the main one being funds). I still tried. It was a difficult process, sometimes even discouraging. I researched what had to be done and how. To convince the community to accept my idea I had to be well informed and know the benefits (as well as the disadvantages) of recycling. I called many places that collected recyclable materials to know which companies had better arrangements and prices for picking these items up.
Several friends, teachers, and websites advised me to create a petition. This would inform my neighbors what I wished to achieve, how, and the role they had to play. After creating this petition I printed all the necessary documents that I had to show the president of the condominium and my neighbors. I called Miami-Dade County for further suggestions and information.
I collected all my information and so I embarked to collect signatures for support and motivation to show the association I was not the only one that cared or supported the idea. My goal was to inform others on this specific environmental issue so I was very surprised when I gained knowledge from this experience. Most of my neighbors were very supportive. They too wondered why there were no recycling bins in our community. I was pleased to discover that I was not the only one concerned with this and that others cared for the environment as well.
Naturally, I was bound to meet others who shared a different opinion than the one I held. Some neighbors refused to sign my petition because their rent would go up. They also claimed they did not have time to recycle. I walked away defeated but forced a smile on my face until the person closed the door. I had to encourage myself to continue. Some people did not answer the door. In one occasion, an elderly woman opened her curtains, saw me (and I saw her) but she still did not answer the door. I was very discouraged and I wanted nothing more than to go home and give up. But I did not give up. I thought of all the support I had received and how much I wanted to accomplish this. I was not going to let my feelings of defeat or people’s laziness be a barrier to the well-being of our environment. However, overall people were supportive and realized that something needs to be done so we do not destroy our home planet.
After collecting as many signatures as possible, I made a pamphlet and collected all the numbers of companies that recycled to show the association. With all the information in front of them they were more likely to say yes (or so I thought). I wished to make this process very simple for them to decrease my chances of being told no and after all, since I started “the movement” it was my responsibility to inform them of all the pros and cons of recycling.
Being timid, I was extremely nervous about going to speak to the president. The feeling did not last very long because as soon as they saw that I was going to talk to them about this issue they told me no. In the blink of an eye, my idea was shattered. The president of my community told me that there were not enough funds or space to set up recycling bins. It would have been too much trouble to go through. My pamphlet and all the information I collected which I had put so much hard work into was not even looked at. I had not even opened the folder that contained all the information because they would not even hear of the matter.
Although I had failed, I believe my project had an impact. I made people conscious of a crucial issue that is affecting our planet. Now more people are aware that something needs to be done. Perhaps I encouraged my neighbors to make environmentally friendly decisions. The association is alert that its residents are concerned with this matter and want change. This project might seem insignificant to the environment, but it signifies we are one step closer to making a big impact on the planet. Earth has been waiting for this impact for a while and it will be achieved one community at a time. Many might think “it’s only one condominium won’t make a difference”. Our community is quite large and when all of the household’s trash is put together it is a very large amount. Overtime the amount recycled would have made a difference. It could even have caused a chain reaction. Other condominiums might see that this one started to recycle and set up a program or perhaps another person like me was incited to do the same in their community and arrange a recycling program.
After completing this project I felt a mix of emotions. The bitter taste of failure was still fresh in my mouth but it had a hint of sweetness in it. The sweet feeling was stronger after I realized that I could have (and to some extent did) made a difference. I had always been afraid of doing something by myself because of all the things that could go wrong and feeling lost without any guidance but I felt very empowered by the idea that I was doing something that would benefit all of us and the environment in the long run. I realized it was not so intimidating to take action and it made me feel strong. In the future, I know I will have to face many battles concerning our environment. This small project is setting up the path and giving me a small taste as to the challenges that will arise and that I will have to act on.
· Date: December 30, 2011 · Views: 2298 · File size: 18.5kb, 187.6kb · : 761 x 639 ·
Hours Volunteered: 40
Volunteers: 1
Authors Age & Age Range of Volunteers: 17
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