The new year is upon us, and it’s a great time to make a resolution to be more sustainable. There are little swaps that you can do in your everyday life to be more eco-friendly. While it's hard to change your lifestyle overnight, setting sustainable resolutions for yourself and your family is a great place to start. Teaching children to be more sustainable by setting green goals helps them to develop a more eco-friendly lifestyle that they can carry into adulthood.
Kids Are the Future
As parents, it’s crucial that you teach your children to make the right choices and be sustainable. Teach them to think about the impact of their everyday choices, and show them that even small choices affect the environment. One day, your children will be adults, become consumers, and have a real impact on the world with their values and decisions. Starting the new year off with green goals for your sustainable resolutions is a great way to get your children, and the entire household, thinking about sustainability and each person's individual impact. It can be as simple as making one sustainable choice each day, like saying no to a plastic straw with your drink. If someone in your family enjoys using a straw, buy them a reusable one!
Simple, Sustainable Goals for Families
• Donate Old Clothes: Instead of throwing away your old clothes, donate them to a local thrift store or donation center.
• Replace with a Sustainable Swap: Every time someone in your family runs out of a household (laundry detergent or dish soap) or personal care item (toothpaste or deodorant), swap it out with a more natural and eco-friendly choice as part of your sustainable goals for the year.
• Try Meatless Mondays: Have your family commit to eating vegetarian or vegan one day a week to reduce meat consumption. Meatless Mondays can help your children expand their palate, try new foods, and eat more vegetables.
• Reduce Single-Use Plastics: Almost everyone uses too much plastic unnecessarily. Teach your kids to use reusable items instead of plastic by making it one of their green goals. When packing lunches, use plastic containers and reusable silicone bags instead of traditional plastic bags. Get a cute lunch box instead of a brown bag. Have your children use a reusable water bottle whenever possible. Another easy swap is reusable to-go mugs for coffee. Some coffee shops, such as Starbucks, give discounts to customers who bring their own mugs.
• Check Out Your Local Farmer’s Market: Do you have a farmer’s market in your area? See what local produce and vendors you can shop from instead of shopping at the supermarket. You can support small, independent businesses and eat seasonally, which is more sustainable because the foods do not have to travel as far. You may be surprised at what your local vendors offer.
Make this year the year that your household becomes a little more sustainable and conscious about the environment. Teaching children at a young age, through sustainable resolutions, helps them to be more aware of how their actions affect the environment. If everyone made an effort, each day, to be more sustainable, the impact on the world would be astounding. You can start by making green goals in your household and encouraging everyone to participate - even if it’s something small.