Environmentally Friendly Fundraising

by John Hamlin 27. April 2009 14:46

Fundraising is a necessary component for most school groups.  As schools plan ahead for their next fundraiser they should consider the impact of their past fundraising efforts and ask the question…is this good for students and the community?

custom_bottle_tall For your next fundraiser consider an Eco-Raiser by Green Benefits.  These programs combine socially responsible fundraising and curriculum to raise the environmental awareness for students, families and the community.

For example, consider a custom imprinted water bottle for your group.  This great product helps raise valuable funds while protecting the environment.  Did you know that it takes 1.5 million barrels of oil to manufacture a year’s supply of bottles water.  That’s enough to fuel 100,000 cars. 

Compact Reusable Bag

Another great fundraiser to consider are reusable shopping bags.  These bags can be custom imprinted with you school logo or community message and come in a wide array of colors and materials.  Here is a fun/scary fact about plastic bags.  The average American uses between 300 and 700 plastic bags per year.  If everyone in the Unites States tied their annual consumption of plastic bags together in a giant chain, the chain would reach around the earth 760 times.

These are just two options available by the team at Green Benefits.  For more information please email info@greenbenefits.net or go the fundraising page to view more products and programs. 

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Natural, Organic or Recycled - What's Your Pleasure?

by John Hamlin 21. April 2009 15:49

With Earth Day occurring this week, we though it was time to share a bit of information about “green” materials, and to clarify what eco-friendly means.   We receive many request about our products, including standard questions about what it means to be made of natural, recycled, organic or some combination of materials.  Here is a bit of basic information on some of the options we carry and few fabric options that to consider.

Bamboo fibers are certainly natural, typically organic and absolutely sustainable in that the plant grows prolifically. An added benefit is that bamboo has antibacterial properties, so that the fabric is a naturally odor- and bacteria-resistant option.  We love bamboo for for its soft silky feel.  We generally only sell our bamboo items as blank product, but can on occasion custom print or embroider for those that want a high quality natural product.

Like bamboo, cotton is a natural option, though it traditionally has required a significant amount of chemicals to grow in abundance. In fact, conventional cotton is one of the world’s most agro-chemically intensive crops per unit. It has been estimated that traditionally grown cotton takes about 1/3 lbs. of pesticides to produce one pound of cotton!  Organic cotton crops – tended with fertilizers and “pesticides” of plant or animal origin – have made the difference for cotton in eco-friendly markets. Green Benefits now offers all of our custom print products in an Organic Cotton.  In fact we now have a GREAT 100% Organic Cotton Custom print T-Shirt with FULL COLOR graphics for only $9.00 per shirt! 

Another natural fabric to consider for the environmentally concerned is hemp. This fiber is valued for its durability and softness. It is naturally resistant to UV rays. Green Benefits doesn't currently stock any hemp products, but will on request provide hemp as an option for your custom apparel. 

Yet another option for your fabric choice can be made from recycled materials. We encourage and desire to move away from petroleum-based textiles such as polyesters however there are alternatives that allow us to offer shirts, sweatshirts, fleece garments and fleece blankets made using recycled materials. For example, garments made from recycled PET filaments (extruded from broken down plastic water and soda bottles) are sustainable and useful. The benefit is that they deter the build up of plastics in landfills, which do not biodegrade. Yet, the value of a polyester garment – its durability and colorfastness – is preserved.

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American Food – It’s all Corporate

by John Hamlin 2. April 2009 19:18

I am getting excited that spring is coming, and hopefully soon despite the weather.  For me with spring, Thursday farmers market will start-up and a spring summer weekly shopping routine will begin.  I feel most fortunate to have many local markets to frequent.  This has not always been the case and based on the current issue of Yes Magazine, it seems that the majority of the food produced in the USA is produced by large corporations.  In fact it states that 2% of farms produce 50% of all agricultural products in the USA.

I recommend everyone pick-up this months, Yes Magazine to learn about the state of our food supply chain and support your local farmers market.

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General | Green Education | Green Food

Download the 2009 Green Benefits Catalog

by John Hamlin 15. March 2009 15:01

Thank you all for the GREAT feedback and compliments at the Wild Wild WACA conference this past week.  Derek, John and the rest of the Green Benefits team are ready to help with your spring Earth Day fundraising events.  For all of you that requested a catalog, we have placed two version for you to download on this page.  They are a high quality and therefore larger PDF and a medium sized PDF.  Both contain the same information, but the photo’s will be more accurate in the high quality version.

In any case, please call us to set-up your fundraising program right away!  1-866-733-3153

Please call us to get your order moving forward.

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Fund Raising | News and Updates | Events

Send in your green fundraising stories

by John Hamlin 14. January 2009 19:57

In 2009 Green Benefits is stepping up and throwing open the doors.  The ‘green’ revolution is still in in the formative stages, but we believe that over time environmentally responsible, sustainable products and services will become the norm.  For this to happen it will take your support and that person next to you and the person next to them and the person next to them. 

 

In the spirit of the individual contributing to the community, we are asking for your support.  Please submit your stories, photos, ideas and suggestions of the best socially conscious and environmentally aware fundraiser you have seen or would like to see for your group.  No idea is too small, to crazy or to big. 

Please post your suggestions below and note if you would like it published on the site.

 

We are looking forward to your suggestions and comments. 

 

Written by:  John Hamlin, January 14, 2009

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BPA – bisphenol A – Should you care?

by John Hamlin 14. January 2009 18:45

There has been an amazing amount of articles, studies, news, journal articles and a great deal of controversy around BPA.  Many companies, and groups are cautioning everyone to avoid products that could expose you to BPA.  With all the controversy and articles that state the dangers and many that with just the opposite opinion, what should you do?

My though process is simple.  If it is a non-natural chemical, and it has this much controversy . . . then I would recommend that it simply be avoided. 

Based on the Wikipedia BPA entry, it seems that it should be avoided, and you should care as the effects although not outwardly apparent in the short term would at most exposure levels have an effect on your health or the health of your family. 

For a great insight into this subject I recommend picking-up and reading the February 2009 issue of Fast Company magazine .  The article titled, “The Truth about BPA” raises very interesting questions about the chemicals we expose ourselves to everyday and the process or lack there of in determining the toxicity, safety and overall impact on ourselves and our environment.  Once the article is available online this article will be updated with a direct link.   (now available) 

Given the great controversy we at Green Benefits have chosen to offer a wide selection of steel, aluminum and plastic, ‘BPA free’ water bottles and drink wear.  

How to Identify plastic bottles:

Plastic Identification Code


Type of plastic polymer


Properties

Common Packaging Applications

Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET, PETE) Clarity, strength, toughness, barrier to gas and moisture. Soft drink, water and salad dressing bottles; peanut butter and jam jars
High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) Stiffness, strength, toughness, resistance to moisture, permeability to gas. Milk, juice and water bottles; trash and retail bags.
Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) Versatility, clarity, ease of blending, strength, toughness. Juice bottles; cling films; PVC piping
Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE) Ease of processing, strength, toughness, flexibility, ease of sealing, barrier to moisture. Frozen food bags; squeezable bottles, e.g. honey, mustard; cling films; flexible container lids.
Polypropylene (PP) Strength, toughness, resistance to heat, chemicals, grease and oil, versatile, barrier to moisture. Reusable microwaveable ware; kitchenware; yogurt containers; margarine tubs; microwaveable disposable take-away containers; disposable cups and plates.
Polystyrene (PS)
Versatility, clarity, easily formed Egg cartons; packing peanuts; disposable cups, plates, trays and cutlery; disposable take-away containers;
Other (often polycarbonate or ABS) Dependent on polymers or combination or polymers Beverage bottles; baby milk bottles; electronic casing.


by John Hamlin – January 14, 2009

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Plastic

Green Benefits News Letter October 2008 - Vol. 1, Issue 4

by John Hamlin 18. December 2008 12:27

Enhance Your School with Green Benefits    October, 2008 - Vol 1, Issue 4

Green BenefitsGreetings!  Can you believe that Halloween is just around the corner.  Please be sure to check out Treeswing and their ideas for a Green Halloween

The team at Green Benefits is excited and committed to helping your organization.  Each and every school is in a unique position to positively impact their children, families and community. 

Join today and help us save our environment.

Coffee of the Month Club

We are excited to announce our partnership with

Pangea coffee.  All Pangea coffee is Organic, Fair Trade Certified and roasted locally.  Without a doubt, Rick at Pangea roasts some of the finest coffee in the Northwest. 

Join the club and your coffee will be delivered monthly to your school for pickup.  This is a triple bottom line fundraiser that you can feel good about supporting.  It tastes great as too!

Email today to learn how to join the coffee of the month club.

 

NW Green Youth Summit Community Outreach Program

Co-op AmericaJoin in the effort to improve our local community.  The theme of this event is to reduce our over use of disposable plastics.  Help us educate and spread the word about the impact of plastic on the environment and become part of the solution.

No outreach program is too small.  Impact your classroom, your school or your neighborhood.  Together we can make a difference!  Your group will be given the tools and guidance to implement community change.

Participating groups will earn free admission for their school or organization to Green Festival 2009 as well as guarantee participation in the NW Green Youth Summit.  Space for this exciting event is limited and will fill up quickly.  

The NW Green Youth Summit will be day of celebration and education.  All participating groups will showcase their projects and be honored at Green Festival.  This event will bring together students, educators and families for training, motivation and networking.   The mission of this event is to foster activism and build a coalition of youth and educators who will continue to work together in the fight against climate change.  

For more information about the NW Green Youth Summit and Green Festival email info@greenbenefits.net

Green Halloween 2008

Green OctoberJoin us this month for Green October and participate in the many activities planned.  Now more than ever the choices we make matter.  Vote with your dollars, vote with your fork, and by all means vote?

Also, check out Treeswing and their guide to a Green Halloween.  It is time to think outside of the candy box.  Whether your family has been green for years or whether you're green at being green, you will find ideas about celebrating a healthy and Earth-friendly Halloween.

For more information about Green Halloween email info@greenbenefits.net.

Facts About Clothing

Plastic Loop

Most people do not think about the clothing we wear and its impact on the environment.   Until about fifty years ago, cotton growing mainly involved  sustainable techniques.  Today, the pesticides used on 'conventional' cotton increasingly threatens people, wildlife and the environment.

Conventional cotton is one of the most pesticide laden crops in the world; accounting for only 3% of the cultivated land BUT accounting for 25% of the annual pesticides used and 10% of the annual herbicides used.  Organic cotton production is all natural and used NO chemicals in the cultivation of the crop or the conversation of the crop into clothing.  Many shirts today also utilize recycled plastic combined with organic cotton. 

When you purchase Organic/Recycled clothing you help eliminate chemicals from the environment and save natural resources and help preserve and restore a healthy, clean planet for everyone.

Did you know that it takes 1/3 pound of chemicals to produce one tractional cotton T-shirt.  Consider buying Organic/Recycled clothing today.

To purchase Organic or Recycled clothing for your group email

info@greenbenefits.net .  Make this your greenest year!

In This Issue

Coffee of the Month Club

Community Outreach Programs

Green Halloween

Facts About Clothing

Join Our Mailing List!

Quick Links

Green Benefits

NW Green Schools

Washington Green Schools

Co-op America

Green Festival

Treeswing

Green Halloween

Green October 2008

Green Benefits is committed to helping your organization.  Our mission is to help children, families and the community live healthier and greener lives.

Please feel free to distribute our information to any group or individual that could benefit from our services or products.  We look forward to helping you live a greener life.

Sincerely,

Derek VanDyke & John Hamlin

Green Benefits Team

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News Letters