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  • Elizabeth Start

Talking Trash in April

“I’m a SWANCC-y lady, and I’m here to talk trash.”


One of my favorite environmental educators, Mary, used to lead her presentations with that phrase, working in a pun about the name of the local government agency we worked at together.


Mary and her puns come to mind when Earth Month rolls around every year. It reminds me that environmental educators are unsung sheroes and heroes. April is the busiest time of year for them with schools, businesses, and groups scheduling presentations and projects to commemorate Earth Month and Earth Day. They reach students and adults alike with important messages on how to care for the planet and combat climate change.


Every April, Mary would pack up her various kits and have multiple presentations throughout the day for multiple days. It was a wonder she still had a voice left when her day was done. Mary laid the groundwork and educated many people on waste prevention and recycling. Like Mary, hundreds of educators step up to do this important work, and sometimes it is thankless but much-needed.


To support the work of your local environmental educator, donate to their nonprofit or ask your local governments to include budgets to keep their work going strong. Not just in April, but all year long.


A special thank you and shoutout to all you environmental educators. You make this world a better place.



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