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New name, new look, but same mission – to teach and encourage green living

Bluegrass PRIDE is now Bluegrass Greensource. We’ve updated our social media accounts, launched our new website and got new business cards and email addresses. But now what?

Amy Sohner, executive director of Bluegrass Greensource, took a moment to reflect on our accomplishments in the last 12 years and expressed her desires for the future.

“Since I’ve been around from the beginning, I have really enjoyed seeing a shift in the understanding of what it means to be green. And with our new name, new brand, we want to continue this momentum,” she said.

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Our environmental educators have worked with students in over 230 schools. “On any given day, they may be knee-deep in a stream showing kids how to test water quality or up to their elbows in classroom trash as they complete a dumpster dive.” Amy reminisced.

We also work with teachers on how they can use the environment to teach across all disciplines. We have taken science, social studies and English teachers in a coal mine and to solar farms to help them teach about energy.

PRIDE’s outreach specialists stay busy reaching out to Central Kentucky’s adult population and educating them on waste reduction, water quality and energy efficiency issues. This year alone, our staff assisted with home energy audits, partnered with community organizations to stencil storm drains and completed waste analyses for area businesses helping them recycle almost 1500 tons each year.

Our grant programs have helped Lower Howard’s Creek Nature and Heritage Preserve remove invasive plants and open its first public hiking trail. Eastern Kentucky University installed five reusable water bottle filling stations in campus buildings, saving tens of thousands of plastic water bottles from the landfill. Madison County Conservation District developed a fallen animal composting pad to use for education and demonstration purposes. Herrington Lake Conservation League cleaned up the lake, filling 19 commercial dumpsters with litter and manmade debris from the lake, while establishing a recycling and litter reduction program at several marinas.

We also provide resources to community groups for litter removal along roads and streams and have removed more than 150,000 bags of trash from local roadways and stream banks. To help promote our message across the region, we have assisted in making events throughout Central Kentucky both litter and waste free!

Over time, we became THE SOURCE for green education in Central Kentucky. With that said, we wanted our name to better reflect our mission and the fact that we are the green source for this area. As we begin this new chapter, we want to continue our outreach in the schools, building on the programs we provide in our region.

We want to continue our outreach in homes, encouraging small changes that make a big impact not only to our local environment, but also to our wallets and our health.

We want to continue building our partnerships with more than 600 business and apartment complexes, assisting them in all of their green needs and helping them get recognition for being environmentally responsible.

With this said, we need your help spreading the word. Same important mission, just a new name. Please share with your friends and your community.
Chris Clabes photo

Chris Clabes is the Development and PR Coordinator at Bluegrass Greensource.  Before joining BG Greensource, Chris worked as a consultant for numerous nonprofit organizations across the state, including the formation of Kentucky Philanthropy Initiative and Governor Beshear’s Commission on Philanthropy.  She was KY 4-H Foundation’s executive director and served as the Director of Finance for the National Association of Home Builders’ Political Action Committee in DC. She received her BA at the University of Kentucky.

This article appeared in KY Forward on July 4, 2013.

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