Eco Allies presents Earth Week events


A snout butterfly stops to get some nectar from a flower on campus. Staff file photo.

Eco Allies is a student organization focused, according to their advisor Sharon Curry, on helping the Trinity community become more conscious and eco-friendly.

“They’ve definitely helped increase awareness through peer to peer education, which is something I struggle with as staff. When students are engaging students, the programs are more successful,” Curry said.

Kristen Rundstein, president of the Eco Allies, described some of the events her organization will be putting on as part of Earth Week.

“Earth Week is a yearly event that we’ve been hosting for the past several years. This year we did a garden work day, which is pretty traditional, and on Friday we will hosting an Eco Festival, which we’re really excited about. We’re hosting nacho hour and on Thursday we’re showing Wall-E in Mabee,” Rundstein said.

The Eco Allies will be hosting a campus exchange for gently used products, open to anyone with a Trinity ID.

“The campus exchange is something we do every semester now, instead of every year, because we’ve seen so much support for it. It’s on Friday, and it’s an effort to keep items out of the landfill. We found that there was a lot of interest in students exchanging some items instead of simply donating them, so we do this as a precursor to the Goodwill end of year collection, so it’s a good way for students to bring items that they no longer want, and students who would like those items to pick them up and take them. We hold it at Heidi Lounge, and it’s an all day event. In the morning, we invite people to come and drop off their items, and then from one to four, students and staff can come and take anything they want at no cost,” Curry said.

The reason for hosting such an exchange is to reduce the amount of waste that would ultimately end up in a landfill, a growing problem today.

If you look at, for instance, the Texas report for landfills, it’s estimated that if we keep going at the rate we’re going, and we don’t build more landfills, we will run out of landfill space in 60 years. Obviously that’s a problem because where do you put the garbage if you don’t want a landfill?

At the same time as the campus exchange, the group will be hosting a festival to help raise awareness for their cause.

“We try to get a lot of campus clubs and a few off campus organizations to participate. I believe B-Cycle will be there. We’ll have live music and some activities, we’ll be giving away some free stuff like wildflower seeds and reusable bags, and it’s really just us trying to get people aware,” Rundstein said.

The club will be joining a national march for science to bring send a message to our politicians.

“We just plan on making posters and trying to get as many people to come down to the march with us as we can. It’s organized through a larger organization, and it’s a national event, so we just hope to raise awareness to our politicians that this generation does care about science, and that there are many of us who believe that global warming is affecting us and we want to see a change in reduced emissions, and that scientific agencies like the EPA should continue to receive the funding that they have been,” Rundstein said.

Junior Zeina Zayat explains why she supports the club in their endeavours.

“I think it’s becoming more and more important for us to raise awareness about climate change and the things we can do to be more environmentally conscious, especially when we see leaders and prominent people denying it’s even a problem,” Zayat said.

The club’s goal is to shift the attitude of the Trinity community to something more environmentally conscious.

“I’m really hoping to see a change in the Trinity community. We have the sustainable infrastructure, but we want to change the culture so that people want to engage and participate in recycling and reducing their food waste and things like that,” Curry said.

“As a campus, there’s always room for improvement. We have the means, but it’s hard to change a mindset of a single person, let alone an entire campus,” Rundstein said.