Julie lives in Wellington with her husband and three children. She attended a presentation by Liam and Hannah in June 2017 and since then has been on a mission to reduce her household waste and inspire others to join her on the journey. She admits that with three kids it is sometimes a struggle, and she certainly has a long way to go before she could honestly say that her household is ‘waste-free’. However, she is proud of the changes she has made so far and looks forward to further reducing her family’s impact on the environment.
We are a couple with three school-aged children. Early last year, our then-12-year-old son came home buzzing about a presentation he had attended at his school. It was all about reducing rubbish and he was keen for our family to make changes to reduce our impact on the environment. At that time, if you’d asked me if I thought we were an ‘environmentally friendly’ family, I probably would have said ‘YES’! After all, I carried round reusable shopping bags in the back of our car (although I might have admitted that I usually forgot to take them into the supermarket), we composted, our lunch boxes were usually package-free and we recycled wherever possible. I thought we were doing ok. However, if I’m really honest, I didn’t think about rubbish too much.
Not long after my son had attended the presentation at school (which I soon learned was called ‘The Rubbish Trip’), a friend invited me along to a public presentation of the same talk. Liam and Hannah were presenting at a community room in Karori and with my son’s encouragement, I went along.
Wow. I was absolutely inspired. I very quickly realised that I wasn’t quite as environmentally conscious as I thought I was. And although I couldn’t quite bring myself to wash my hair with cornflour, or make my own deodorant, I knew there were some big changes that we could make as a family. This was to be the start of our journey of change.
There were plenty of points from ‘The Rubbish Trip’ presentation that really struck me with ‘OMG that’s me!’. Here are a few of the points that Liam and Hannah made and the changes that we’ve since made in our household:
Over July I shared our waste-reducing progress on facebook and I talked A LOT about Plastic-free July with anyone who would listen. I figure if one person is inspired to make change with each post or conversation, we’re making a difference.
Thanks Liam and Hannah – you’ve inspired amazing change!
Julie, mum of three, Ngaio
This post is part of our blog series “A Waste of Time?: Preaching to ‘the converted’”. You can read about the origin and kaupapa of this series here.