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After Kimberly Danek Pinkson coproduced an event for World Environment Day in 2006, she was touched to hear that it had inspired a friend to switch out her incandescent lightbulbs for fluorescent ones. "We were on a moms picnic, and everyone started sharing planet-saving tips," Pinkson says. "I suddenly realized the power moms have to effect global change." So Pinkson started the EcoMom Alliance. She tells us how the group's 11,000 members are changing the world.
How do you mobilize members to green their communities?
Pinkson:Our Website offers training to become an EcoMom leader — there are more than 300 — and they host parties to introduce the EcoMom Challenge, which is our 10 steps for a sustainable future. The list includes things like planting a tree and buying carbon offsets. Then those groups meet monthly and figure out how to use our site's ideas to best serve their communities. We've just started broadcasting some of the meetings as webinars on our site, so anyone can log on and watch. EcoMom is very grassroots — what works in Minneapolis is different from what works in Mumbai. But whatisuniversal is the powerful voice we gain from uniting that we can use to make a real impact.
What initiatives have EcoMoms taken on?
Pinkson:Some groups visit local markets and lobby them to carry more organic food and to ban plastic bags. Others go into their kids' schools and push for recycling and waste-free lunches. They've also been advocating the idea of taking "One Night Off" per week to turn off the lights, TVs, and other appliances, to save energy. And they can shop for eco-friendly products at our online EcoMom Marketplace.
Can I join EcoMom?
Pinkson:Sure, it's simple! Log on to ecomomalliance.org to sign up. You don't have to be a mom, either. We've got non-moms, dads, grandmas — all types. Then it's as easy as tweaking the things you already do and connecting with others to make a difference.
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