Our volunteers came together this afternoon to finalize plans for Wednesday. Thank you everyone for your dedication to making this an amazing unConference!
The Sustainability unConference aims to break down industry barriers and to start discussions between different collaborators.
With our goal of starting dialogues and breaking down these silos, the participants are as diverse as the sessions that are proposed. There are students, entrepreneurs, government workers, company representatives, and everyone in between. We stress to everyone involved at this event that the idea is to create new connections that wouldn't be made otherwise more than to pitch what their individual companies/initiatives are focused on.
This means that if you would like to table, we ask you to bring materials that are engaging and conversation starters instead of the normal marketing materials present at booths for most conferences. We also ask that session facilitators brainstorm ways to create an impact driven and participatory discussion instead of a formal presentation.
We look forward to driving forward lasting impact together through this innovative format and can't wait to collaborate with each and every one of you.
What do your personal investments have to do with the fossil fuel industries driving climate change, and the national and international action needed to prevent the worst impacts? Find out, join the Divest Invest movement by taking the Individual Pledge, and begin planning to divest your holdings in the largest 200 fossil fuel companies within the next 5 years. The fossil fuel divestment movement continues to grow as individuals, institutions, and groups commit to divest and reinvest those funds in sustainable and equitable ways. If you are an individual investor asking "How do I invest better?", make this Earth Day count by pledging, learning how to start moving your money, and contributing to the goal of $150 billion in committed fossil free investments by COP 21 in Paris this December.
For the first time the Sustainability unConference would aim to be a Zero waste event. Thanks to an in-kind donation from our partner Save that Stuff, one of the nation’s leading companies in Zero Waste services, and hard work on behalf of our Zero Waste Coordinator, this year's Sustainability unConference is on track to "walk the talk" if you will!
To achieve this goal, 90% of the waste has to be recycled, reduced or reused. Zero-Waste stations will be located throughout the District Hall, each with bins for recycling, compost and trash. Zero Waste volunteers would be watching the stations to educate the public and to facilitate proper discarding. See the Zero Waste e-flyer to know how you can help to build this initiative. We need everyone to do their part to ensure succeed! If you have any questions feel to write a comment or email Laura Corrales at firstname.lastname@example.org.
newly appointed chief of Environment, Energy, and Open Space for city of boston, Austin blackmon, to open unconference
At the start of 2015, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh appointed Austin Blackmon as Chief of Environment, Energy, and Open Space for the City of Boston. Joining Sustainability unConference Founder Sierra Flanigan, Blackmon will kick-off the Sustainability unConference with opening remarks the on the city's sustainability-related priorities, the upcoming Greenovate Boston Community Summit, and also unveil Greenovate's new interactive website.
This year's unConference will be preceded by the first ever Sustainability unWorkshop on Sunday, April 19th from 4-6pm at Venture Café. This unWorkshop is designed for Sustainability trailblazers and session facilitators to come together and deepen connection, share engagement strategies, and chart out a shared vision for the Sustainability unConference on Earth Day, April 22nd. Led by the talented Caleb Dean and Julia Frost from Owl, Fox, and Dean, the Sustainability unWorkshop will set the tone for the entire unConference. If this is something you are interested in being apart of, please email Sierra at email@example.com
Nearly 75% percent of the world’s coffee is produced by small farmers in the developing world who cultivate the bean on less than 10 acres of farmland. Nearly 25 million coffee farmers live in highly vulnerable conditions, subsisting on an average of $4 US per day. Many require their children stay home from school to help tend the land or ration food between harvests in a phenomenon referred to in Central America as “los meses flacos,” or the thin months.
In the context of Nicaragua, climatic and socioeconomic factors coupled with rigorous standards set forth by alternative trade certifications have left coffee farmers destitute. FairTrade certifications and small farmer organizations (SFOs) have made good progress in improving access to markets, but require expensive investments to join, they may be poorly regulated, and they are difficult to access for many of the smallest farmers. In addition, these efforts generally stop short of providing the education and resources necessary to address the long-term challenges of farming families.
That’s where Alianza comes in. We aim to build a sustainable, community-based intervention to radically improve the quality of life of marginalized coffee farmers by providing field-based agricultural education and the necessary tools and resources to access lucrative markets.
-Kristin Van Busum