Many studies show that by teaching kids about conservationism and sustainability at an early age we create much more environmentally aware and responsible adults. When Judy Shils included her young daughter, Erin Schrode, in her environmental protection efforts as part of their daily lives living in Northern California, she proved these studies correct. Erin grew up with positive environmental stewardship as a well-worked family value, so it is no wonder that she grew up to develop the organization called “Teens Turning Green: A Way of Life,” a collaborative youth-led movement to change the world.
Originally called Teens for Safe Cosmetics, Erin launched the campaign in 2005 in an effort to ban toxic substances such as lead, mercury and other harmful chemicals from cosmetics. Erin and her mom, soon to be joined by other teens from local middle and high schools, identified common cosmetics used by teens, and then went to work with scientists and chemists to develop safe, green alternatives to the toxic make-up currently on the market. It wasn’t long before Erin and her team travelled to Sacramento to testify before the legislature and ban poisonous ingredients in cosmetics. Their mission was successful and with a desire to widen their sphere of influence into other areas of environmentalism, sustainability, and protection of the earth and its resources, Teens Turning Green was born.
They soon moved into the educational field, launching a school awareness program called Project Green Dorm on such things as food service, janitorial supplies, landscaping and classroom products. They held a public rally in San Francisco during prom season to highlight the ease, functionality, and availability of eco beauty, fashion, décor and transportation options, and named their efforts Project Green Prom. They also launched Project Lunch, a movement to make quality food affordable and available to everyone.
Today, Teens Turning Green makes and distributes their own line of skin and body care products through trusted companies, and founded the first Project Green Challenge in October 2011, that challenged students and schools across the world to participate in eco-awareness and conservation efforts across the board.
Teens Turning Green started from one small spark that became a catalyst for positive change in the world, and Erin and her group promise to keep forging ahead, inspiring young people to know, care, act, dream and do.
For more information on Teens Turning Green, click here.