One of the key areas of parenting, which is often forgotten or rendered unrelated is our environmental care and protection.
We send our children to school, discipline them, provide for everything they need, buy insurance, prepare them to become contributing citizens of the nation; basically, we do our best to help prepare them for the future. But we often forget that this future is heavily dependent on the future of our environment. The future of mother Earth
Unfortunately, our actions and practices the past couple of centuries have been destructive to say the least for the environment. But it isn’t too late! We can still do something. That is if we all contribute in doing something ‘healing’ for the environment.
I see posts, videos and a few blogs about zero-waste, but many of them are from another country, luckily I found a Filipina blogger focusing on Zero Waste – the Zero Waste Filipina, please find her latest pos here, and was a sheer joy to meet someone who actually lives a (near) Zero-Waste Lifestyle –
Meet Kimmy Roguis
“I studied Travel Management in the University of Santo Tomas. I think I could say that I am a terribly ambitious child growing up, I always wanted so many things out of life, I wanted to become an archeologist, a fashion designer, an actress, a graphic designer, writer and many more, but sometimes, life won’t give you as many lemons that you need to make different types of lemonade so you gotta be adaptable and make the best out of what you only have. I’m currently working as an Executive Assistant, which I thoroughly enjoy because I get exposed to many aspects of the corporate world. I am a strong advocate of Sustainability/Environmental Conservation, Education, Animal Welfare, Mental Health, and Feminism.”
Currently, she also wears an HR Hat supporting us when it comes to socials & fun events and Recruitment requirements. This lady has a future in HR, to be honest. 🙂
What does it mean to have a zero-waste lifestyle?
“Zero-waste lifestyle in it’s simplest definition is basically, avoiding trash in your life by reducing the number of things you consume and consequently throws away or in other words…conscious consumerism. We now live in a world where we are constantly bombarded by wastes on every purchase we make. People love “convenience” but sadly, convenience is now always packaged in something nature cannot really digest. So following a zero-waste lifestyle, is also in a way, minimalistic living.
“Choosing sustainable options all the time like avoiding single-use plastics/packaging at all cost. But then again, everyone must take note that converting to a zero-waste lifestyle does not happen over night. It is a lengthy process that requires a strong commitment and resourcefulness.”
EXHIBIT A: A collage of some of our “baon” (Preparing your own meals is a great way to avoid disposables/food packaging)
What triggered your decision to transition to the zero-waste lifestyle?
“This is going to be a different answer than most people are expecting. Usually, people do this because they want to leave a better planet for the future human generation. [Emile: such is my own motivation :)] But the main reason why I started transitioning is that I am a huge animal lover and it pains me to see many kinds of animal suffer and die because of something they are totally uninvolved with: human trash. They have always been the blameless victim to human greed and I want to help heal our planet for them.
“It started when I’ve seen a buzzfeed video of Lauren Singer, founder of trashisfortossers.com back in December 2017.”
EXHIBIT B: Kimmy and her lovely cockatiel: Alto
How did you get started?
“I started by assessing how I generate trash in my life so I know how to avoid them and what are the alternatives that I can do. The big 3’s of waste in my life (or in most of our lives) are: Groceries (Food), Toiletries and Clothing/Fashion Items.”
“As I’ve mentioned the big 3 waste generators in my life, here is how I manage to lessen my waste for each category:
– Bringing not just a grocery bag but also containers for meat and cotton bags for other produce like vegetable, fruits and grains.
– Avoiding packaged items such as processed foods.
– Avoiding chips and other unhealthy snacks
– For necessary ingredients that are packed, choose recyclable materials such as cartons, tin cans or glass jars for recycling.
– Remove unnecessary “beauty” products like creams, toners, and the like from my routine
– Purchase shampoo, soaps, conditioner and other household items from RITUAL (A shop that provides package-free items)
– Stop using disposable sanitary napkins and switch to menstrual cups and reusable cotton pads.
– Use biodegradable and organic cleaning materials such as vinegar, lemon and baking soda.
– Purchase from ukay-ukay instead of shops
– Never purchase items that you will only wear a few times
– Attend to fashion trading events or donate old clothes.
-Always say no to bagging your items in plastics (bring your own eco-bag or ask to be boxed in a used carton)
-Always say “no straw please” when ordering drinks
– Always finish your meals in restaurants never go for take-out unless you are prepared and have your own reusable container
– Buy second-hand items instead of brandnew
– Only print when necessary, all other documents should all be digital/paperless
REFUSE, REDUCE, REUSE, REPAIR, RECYCLE, ROT, RETHINK
EXHIBIT C: Package-free options at Robinson’s Select, make sure to always bring your cloth bags!
What challenges did you experience as you were transitioning?
“The hardest part, in the beginning, was, of course, saying goodbye to being care-free and the bliss of consuming whatever you want, whenever you want and not having to always think before purchasing whatever except if you can afford it.”
What challenges do you still encounter now? Which one of those did you find most difficult to overcome?
“It is sad there are no full-pledged zero-waste grocery stores yet in the Philippines unlike in Europe so for now, I have to get my items in different places, this so far is very challenging.
“What’s also frustrating in this lifestyle is the contrast that you see and experience living among other people.
“Here you are lessening your waste and you see trash scattered everywhere, every day and people mindlessly consuming wasteful products around you and having very little power to change their mind and show them the sustainable way.”
What about fulfillment?
“Going zero-waste is actually more than worth it because you can save financially, you can have a healthier diet and you are saving the world one step at a time all while practicing mindfulness which is also great for your mental health/sharpness.
“It also made me feel more attuned with mother nature and feel like I’m doing something really good for all the precious animals of the world by not contributing more trash than an average human does.”
Call To Action
“I just wish the mass will realize the massiveness of the world’s pollution problem before it’s too late. Every other species on the planet works towards the benefit of the ecology and environment that it lives in, but us humans, we just seem like passengers on this earth when we instead should be its stewards.
“The whole planet is where we live. There is no “away” that you can put things and expect that they’re really away. People should really start watching at least the following films: Wall-E, A Plastic Ocean, Aquaman *wink* *wink*”
EXHIBIT D: Kimmy during MUNI MEET-UP (A Zero-waste event)
EXHIBIT E: Kimmy & Sonny
By the way, Kimmy is a blogger, too. You may find her latest post here. It was some time ago, and seriously, I think she should consider reactivating her blog and perhaps talk about #ZeroWasteLifestyle and #ConsciousConsumerism, among her other interests. What do you think? 🙂
I hope you found this article helpful and inspiring. See you again soon!