Beauty is in the eye (or ear) of the beholder.
"We filmed some of the children who learned to play violin, flute, drums, cello, string bass, and more – all made from recycled metal drums, tin cans, and plastic pipes."
Please enjoy this short video.
The compelling story of transformation
In Paraguay and other third-world countries, children are born and live their entire lives in a dump. Surrounded by other people’s trash. Most of this trash is even sent to these landfills from more prosperous countries. Imagine, wealthy countries cannot even dispose of their own trash, they must send it away, out of their site and smell.
The families, living on this landfill, then sort through this trash daily to sell anything of value. They eat, sleep, play, learn and live entirely in the dump. This is an unsafe and unsanitary environment and, as you can imagine, emanates a horrible odor. Certainly, a story that needed to be told about injustice and exploitation of the poor. How could we stand by and watch people live under these conditions?
Then, the story gets better. Cola, a garbage picker, and Favio Chavez, musician, helped to transform this trash into hope and beauty for these impoverished children. They made instruments and learned how to play. Now, known as the “The Recycled Orchestra of Cateura.” Perhaps, they won’t have to live their entire life in the landfill. Perhaps, there is hope. Perhaps, this will bring humanity closer to these impoverished families and portray them as skillful, talented and viable world citizens.
How to help
First, use their inspiration to be more conscious about how you dispose of your trash. Do you currently recycle at home? “Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle” are great goals…even our children are learning about this in school. Check out TreeHugger’s Top Recycling Tips to make recycling more of a daily habit.
If you have a business, do you consider optimizing your packaging options? Have you evaluated how your “product is designed, what it contains, how it is made, and where it goes after use”? You may find some inspiration with William McDonough’s Cradle-to-Cradle Product Innovations Institute and certification program.
Get involved in the cause: donate; follow the tour; youth education; instrument drive; and/or volunteer. Find out more about The Landfillharmonic.
Share Blazon Laurels Blog because more people need to see this story of creativity, innovation and hope. Thank you!Read More »
What kind of world would you like to leave our future generations?
Your children and their children …
What can you do to make a difference?
Please spend two minutes with Julia Butterfly Hill, Author and Activist, watching this video.Read More »
Las Vegas is GREEN. Amazing but true.
I lived in Las Vegas for five years and never heard a word about sustainability in the 1990′s. However, I was always impressed and inspired with the innovative business practices of my employer, the Wynn properties (including Bellagio, The Mirage, Treasure Island and Golden Nuggets). I often wonder, if I still lived in Vegas, whether I’d be working for Zappos.com. Either way, it’s wonderful to know that even sin-city who thrives in lights, action and over-consumption is taking steps to ‘do good and do well.”
I am inspired to share this article I read this morning from Smart Planet, “Verde Las Vegas?” by Mary Catherine O’Connor. Ironically, I’m now in Las Vega$. Apropos. as we’ll be visiting the revamped downtown today.
Progress in Las Vegas
The following stats were excerpted from this inspiring Smart Planet article:
- Reduced its energy consumption by 22 percent since 2010.
- 8 percent of electricity comes from solar panels with plans to gain another 13 percent of energy from solar.
- Local government is prioritizing walkable communities.
- Waste oil from kitchens serving the nearly 40 million annual visitors is collected and used to help power city busses, running on biodiesel.
- Caesars has reduced its landfill contribution by 25 percent by managing their own recycling facilities.
- Water consumption has reduced about 40 percent since 1989, despite the city’s significant growth.
Looking forward to seeing more
Kudos to Las Vegas. Hoping they will inspire more cities to make positive changes for our future and prosperity for all.REGISTER FOR BLOG Read More »
My first exposure to the Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation wasn’t random but was a pleasant, heartwarming and serendipitous surprise. My involvement in social and environmental justice education basically planted me in this tranquil San Diego downtown cafe and bookstore called EcoVerse: Jing Si Books & Cafe. Upon entering, I felt a calming effect. Perhaps, it was the warm smiles? The beautiful artwork? The zen decor? The smell of freshly brewed tea? The soft music? Whatever the reason, I felt at home.
My original intention was to use their knowledgable staff and inspirational learning space for an upcoming “Zero-Waste Living-Party” to promote the sustainable lifestyle in our community. Then, in the future, I had hoped to plan other educational events there. I had no idea what else this experience had in store for me.
Pure. Authentic. Inspiration.
What inspired me
"Tzu Chi’s core values in disaster relief included a deep respect for the environment and an emphasis on personal connections."
LEVI’S <Made of Progress>
Imagine the possibilities for business. Rather than take, companies give. Rather than follow, companies lead. Innovative businesses lead the way to a sustainable future just by changing their thinking about manufacturing and production processes. Levi’s did and look at them continuing to build their legacy with jeans made of garbage and clothing made with virtually no water. This is an example of a company staying competitive and cornering their market using corporate social responsibility values. Let’s support them, as conscious consumers, in their admirable and risk-taking <Made of Progress> venture.
Levi’s Brand + will.i.am = EKOCYCLE
"Waste is only waste if we waste it."
"Waste is only waste if we waste it."