Doing good by being green at SheilSheil Catholic Center Green Team was formed three years ago following a voluntary audit from Engineers for a Sustainable World (ESW). The audit analyzed several environmental factors and provided comprehensive suggestions on how to reduce energy consumption and waste of the Catholic Center. Their team started off with simple initiatives, such as hanging posters to raise awareness and increase recycling at the center, but the projects soon became more involved—and more rewarding.
In cooperation with Students for Ecological and Environmental Development (SEED), the Green Team collected plastic bags, which were then “upcycled” and crocheted into sleeping mats that were donated to the homeless. In addition, traditional landscape plants behind the Catholic Center were replaced by a community garden, which grows fresh food for event functions at the center. This was taken a step further last year when sprouts were cultivated indoors during the winter in order to grow more efficiently during the summer. This year, the Green Team has enacted a composting program, where food waste and coffee grounds are given new life as dirt for the garden.
NU environmental engineering junior and Green Team member, Tiffany Sevilla, emphasizes that the team is “a great way to bring together two important parts of my life,” as she can maintain her values of a healthy lifestyle while supporting her faith. “Anyone is welcome to join the Green Team,” Tiffany adds, “the Catholic Center has its own space to accommodate projects like gardening and composting, and it is a great opportunity to make connections with adults and other students.”
If you are interested in joining the Sheil Green Team, email Tiffany Sevilla.