Meet Mindy Agnew: Oak Park's New Sustainability Coordinator

Meet Mindy Agnew: Oak Park's New Sustainability Coordinator

In mid-November, Mindy Agnew took on the role as Oak Park’s new sustainability coordinator, stepping into a post that had been vacant for more than three and a half years.

Mindy’s sustainability pedigree is already well established in Oak Park. She was a member of the team that guided District 97 to incorporate zero waste programs in the schools, beginning in 2008. Since that time, composting, recycling, and zero waste lunches have become commonplace throughout the Oak Park educational system.

12 Months of Sustainability

12 Months of Sustainability

Consider these gifts to Planet Earth for each month of 2018.

January - Take your reusable bags to the market (donate extra reusable bags to the Give a Bag / Take a Bag program).

February - Plan your native and/or edible garden.

Alternative Gifts (Ho, Ho, Ho)

Alternative Gifts (Ho, Ho, Ho)

It’s easy to get pulled into the consumer frenzy during the upcoming holidays. Rethink your approach by making or purchasing hand-crafted products. Or donate to important causes in honor of friends and family. These are a few of our favorite things:

A Tax We Hope No One Will Pay!

A Tax We Hope No One Will Pay!

The Village of Oak Park has unanimously passed an ordinance requiring stores over 5000 square feet to charge 10¢ a single-use bag. The new rule goes into effect on January 1, 2018, and will apply to both paper and plastic bags. The new 10¢ fee will be evenly split between the retailer and the Village, with the Village’s share earmarked for “environmental sustainability initiatives” which have yet to be named.

Join the Movement to Reduce Single-Use Plastics

Join the Movement to Reduce Single-Use Plastics

We've seen the images of seagulls caught in plastic bags, microscopic plastic beads in plankton, and the Great Norther Pacific garbage patch. Plastic is so ubiquitous that cleaning up our enormous mess sometimes seems hopeless. But three opportunities are available for those with a heart to make a difference.

Do It Your Way with DIY Green Block Parties

Do It Your Way with DIY Green Block Parties

Summer is upon us and with it the annual block party season. Block parties are a special part of celebrating community and our wonderful outdoor spaces. It’s also a great way of recognizing and celebrating the many sustainability initiatives and resources in our community – whether it’s native or edible gardens, backyard or curbside composting (offered through the villages of Oak Park and River Forest), solar panels or learning about the awesome trees on your block. By shining a light on these important community assets, we encourage one another and help to build a more resilient future for our children.

Tweet or Post during Fashion Revolution Week

Tweet or Post during Fashion Revolution Week

The One Earth Film Festival's film, "The TrueCost," inspired us to look for ways to act, and we found Fashion Revolution Week (April 18-24), a week of activism designed to build awareness about the true costs of fashion, including social injustice and environmental degradation.

Will you join us? Two easy steps:
1. Take a picture of the tag of your favorite clothing.
2. Tweet or post it to the fashion brand or store's social media account with the hashtag:
#WhoMadeMyClothes

Repurposing Wood from an Old House into a New Table

Repurposing Wood from an Old House into a New Table

It was through Green Community Connections that I first learned of the ReBuilding Exchange. I don’t remember who told me about it, or when I first came across this organization. All I remember is falling in love with its mission, and feeling grateful that there are people so dedicated and committed to making the world a better place.