Plastic Free July!

UPDATE: We were in the News!!! Check the article out at https://www.mapleridgenews.com/community/maple-ridge-recycling-society-encouraging-community-to-take-part-in-plastic-free-july/

My name is Uzair Rizwan, RMRS’s 2022 Summer Student and this July, I will be taking part in the Plastic Free July challenge.

Plastic Free July is a worldwide challenge to encourage people to reduce the amount of plastic they use for however long, whether one day, one week, or the whole month of July.

Join others in your community on your quest to be plastic-free! Meet like-minded people on our Ridge Meadows Plastic Free July Facebook page and share the ups and downs of the challenge. As well, do the survey, where you can examine your plastic habits. Read my tips below!

So a little bit about this challenge. For however long you can, whether it be one day, one week, or the whole month, you will trying to avoid single-use plastics. Whether you choose to not purchase those items or finding plastic-free alternatives, your goal is to be plastic-free!

Whatever plastic items you cannot avoid during the challenge will be stored in a ‘dilemma’ bag. This bag acts as both a record and a memory bank, since whatever plastic items stored will have a story attached to it. I hope for you to join me at the end of the month in a Zoom call, where we can discuss the contents of our dilemma bag and the trials you went through during your challenge

An example ‘dilemma’ bag from 2019

In this challenge, I hope that you become more aware of the amount of plastic used, and alternatives to that plastic. Sharing the results of your challenge to friends and family can inspire people to be less reliant on plastic in their lives!

This challenge can often be difficult, as plastic is tightly woven throughout our lives. But you are not alone. I and many others in the community will be taking this challenge, and we as a community will succeed in our personal goals. By joining the FB Group, you can hear other’s stories, from their success to their troubles, and be inspired by tips and tricks. By working together, we can help each other meet our goals, and reduce the amount of plastic used as well!!!

And by doing the survey, I can connect some resources to you, share any information or details with you. I would love to hear your stories of why you are doing this challenge! If you want to reach out, feel free to email me at uzair@rmrecycling.org

In preparation for this challenge, I have been looking at the ways I consume plastics right now. Here are some points I found:

  • I underestimated my personal plastic usage!! When I looked through my red bin, I found milk jugs, plastic cartons for cookies, and other miscellaneous plastics
  • To prepare for this challenge, I’ve been making a kit of sorts, that will reduce my consumption of plastic. For one, I’ve started getting cloth bags and finding ways to get the food I love without plastic, such as using reuseable containers at bulk stores

I hope my preparation can show you that this challenge is doable, and that if we work as a community, we could gain so much more knowledge from each other, rather than one person doing this. I would love for you to join the Facebook group Ridge Meadows Plastic Free July so that we can communicate about our challenges and successes. See you there!