Celebrate the Accomplishments of the Chicago Conservation Corps

Content Creator, including photographs: C3 Blogger Tom from www.letUbeU.com

Chicago Conservation Corps

The Chicago Conservation Corps (C3) has put together an impressive resume of accomplishments over the past 5+ years. In case you are new to C3, we are a group of over 400 volunteers and teachers (with 3 staff members to facilitate) who recruit and train more volunteers to organize environmentally-friendly projects around Chicago’s 50 wards.

Chicago Conservation Corps

Our projects consist of cleaning neighborhoods & forest preserves, organizing workshops that teach citizens how they can save money by reducing water and electricity consumption, and educating & inspiring Chicago Public School students to be leaders in the conservation movement in Chicago. We also have a Speakers Bureau which provides businesses and organizations with C3 Leaders who provide inspiration and resources to make your event more eco-friendly.

Chicago Conservation Corps

To date, our volunteer’s actions have provided many benefits to the city of Chicago. Please celebrate with C3 and show you care for the environment by following us on Twitter (@ChiConservation) or Facebook (Chicago Conservation Corps) and sharing some of our accomplishments below. To date:

  • 401 projects since 2006 throughout the city
  • Currently 83 active clubs in CPS schools
  • 1,500 students engaged in the program per year
  • 6,903 weatherization kits (for reducing heat loss in homes) installed in 2011-2012 heating season
  • Nearly 125,000 community members impacted by C3 projects
  • 9.4 million pounds of waste diverted from landfills
  • Nearly 300 acres improved through clean-ups and plantings

Thank you for reading. Remember, this is for your, my, and our children’s

Chicago Conservation Corps

All photographs were taken from The Field Museum’s exhibit: The Abbott Hall of Conservation Restoring Earth

Spread the word about West Nile Virus

2008 Chicago West Nile Virus Public Education and Community Outreach Campaign

West Nile Virus infection (WNV) is an illness conveyed to humans primarily by mosquitoes. In most cases, people infected with WNV either show no symptoms or have very mild flu-like symptoms, called West Nile fever. WNV is an urgent issue that needs to be taken seriously in the Chicagoland area every summer.

In a collaborative effort to assist the Chicago Department of Public Health in its 2008 Public Education and Community Outreach Campaign, the Chicago Department of Environment (DOE) will be distributing brochures and magnets to the public at DOE outreach events this summer. Examples include rain barrel distribution and blue cart recycling events. To ensure that information gets to as many people as possible, DOE welcomes the assistance of interested C3 leaders and trainees that can help distribute information to members of their community or neighborhoods.

If you are interested in assisting, please contact Jerry Attere at 312-744-9136 or jerry.attere@cityofchicago.org to receive brochures and magnets for distribution.

For more information on WNV, go to the Chicago Department of Public Health’s webpage that can be found under the City Departments link at www.cityofchicago.org and look for the West Nile Virus information under the Infectious Disease link.

Plastic Bottle Awareness

Of the 25 billion single-serving plastic water bottles Americans use each year, 80% end up in landfills. Recycle your water bottles and, better yet, choose to re-use a refillable water bottle made of a refill-safe material. (BeGreenNow.com)

Last year on August 18, 2007 during and after the Air and Water Show, my group of 15 dedicated volunteers showed up during a rainy day to help me with my project. My project was to pick littered plastic water bottles and placed them in a blue recycling bags, so they may be recycled by the City of Chicago. By doing so, it will eliminate trash, which has a negative effect
on the environment. My team collected ‘hundreds of thousands’ of plastic water bottles, including plastic pop bottles discarded all around North Ave Beach.

This year we are having our Second Annual Water Bottle Awareness for the 50th Annual Chicago Air and Water Show which shakes up the lake front on August 16-17, 2008 which is the LARGEST free show of it’s kind in the United States. It is the city’s second most popular festival. Last year, 2,200,000 people watched the show. Imagine, about 2 million plastic water bottles will be discarded on the beach this year in a two day period.

Worldwide sale of bottled water a year is estimated to be between $50 and $100 billion (US) and increasing approximately 7 to 10 percent annually. In 2004, the US bottled water industry surpassed 6.8 billion gallons of water for that year, an increase of 8.6% over the previous year (Beverage Marketing Corporation, 2005) 22.6 Gallons of bottled water each person in the U.S. consumed in 2006, up 8.4 percent from the previous year.

The consumption of over 150 billion liters of bottled water per year necessitates the use of billions of plastic and glass bottles. Though the materials used are generally recyclable, many of these bottles, particularly those used in developing countries without recycling infrastructure, are discarded rather than recycled, with this trash having a negative effect on the environment. More than a billion water bottles end up in the state’s landfills each year. (The Associated Press)

The plastic used to package the 6 billion gallons of bottled water sold in the United States somehow end up clogging landfills and littering the landscape and spreading toxins into ground water. Nine out of 10 plastic bottles end up as litter. That’s 30 million discarded bottles a day.
(According to Yes! A Journal of Positive Futures 2004)

We, the people of Chicago should all be aware about this, and I urge everyone to help us and give us a hand.

People, contributing in any way, are the main source of the help we need for our city, and the environment. If we can encourage other cities to participate and allow ourselves to be inspired, then we can achieve our goals.

Thank you again for those of you who helped during last year¹s event. Your help is very much appreciated!

M. Grace Sielaff
Leader Chicago Conservation Corps