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October 7 - October 28, 2020
Pat  Hofmeister's avatar

Pat Hofmeister

Saint Louis Zoo Volunteers

"My mission is to join with like-minded people to make this world a better place for my children and grandchildren."

Points Total

  • 0 Today
  • 0 This Week
  • 1,850 Total

Participant Impact

  • up to
    10
    advocacy actions
    completed
  • up to
    2
    documentaries
    watched
  • up to
    9
    donations
    made
  • up to
    968
    minutes
    spent exercising
  • up to
    759
    minutes
    spent learning
  • up to
    1,823
    minutes
    spent outdoors
  • up to
    44
    plastic containers
    not sent to the landfill
  • up to
    15
    hours
    volunteered

Pat 's Actions

Action Track: Justice for the Whole Community

Learn About Trans, Femme, and Nonbinary Experiences

Do at Home

I will spend 30 minutes learning about the experiences of trans, femme, and/or nonbinary people.

Completed
One-Time Action

Action Track: Justice for the Whole Community

Support Native Communities

Do at Home

I will use the resource links provided and spend 30 minutes learning about the native populations that lived in my area prior to colonization, and what I can do to support those that still exist.

Completed
One-Time Action

Action Track: Justice for the Whole Community

Watch a Documentary about Racial Injustice

Do at Home

I will watch 1 documentary(ies) about systemic racism.

Completed
One-Time Action

Water

Mulch the Base of Trees and Plants

Do at Home

I will prevent water runoff and increase absorbency by mulching the base of plants and trees at my home or work.

Completed
One-Time Action

Nature

Learn About the Impact of Old Refrigerants

Do at Home

I will spend 30 minutes researching the impact of old harmful refrigerants on our environment.

Completed
One-Time Action

Nature

Support Local Pollinators

Do at Home

At least 30% of crops and 90% of flowering plants rely on pollinators to produce fruit. I will spend 60 minutes researching which plants support local native pollinators and plant some in my yard.

Completed
One-Time Action

Action Track: Justice for the Whole Community

Watch a Documentary about Food Sovereignty

Do at Home

I will watch 1 documentary(ies) about food sovereignty: the right of local peoples to control their own food systems including markets, ecological resources, food cultures and production methods.

Completed
One-Time Action

Water

Turn off water (while brushing teeth, washing my face, etc.)

My goal is to conserve water. So many of us leave the water running while we are brushing our teeth and washing our face, hands, etc.. Many of us take water for granted. We do not appreciate what an amazing gift water is.

Completed
One-Time Action

Health

Take Control

Do at Home

Both systemic and personal sustainability are important! I will develop a plan with my medical professionals to achieve my best health and live my life to the fullest.

Completed
One-Time Action

Action Track: Justice for the Whole Community

I will read The Everglades, River of Grass

The goal is to learn about the conservation of The Everglades. I chose this because my captains suggested reading it.

Completed
One-Time Action

Action Track: Healing and Renewal

Go for a Daily Walk Outside

Do at Home

I will take a walk outside for 30 minutes each day.

COMPLETED 22
DAILY ACTIONS

Waste

Prevent Recycling Contamination

Do at Home

Contamination prevents what is recyclable from being recycled. I will spend 30 minutes researching which materials are accepted by local haulers or drop stations in my community and recycle only those items.

COMPLETED 22
DAILY ACTIONS

Action Track: Healing and Renewal

Practice Gratitude for Earth

Do at Home

I will spend 60 minute(s) per day outside, practicing gratitude (prayer, meditation, journaling, etc.) for Earth and my natural surroundings.

COMPLETED 22
DAILY ACTIONS

Action Track: Healing and Renewal

Happiness

Do at Home

I will write down three things every day that I am grateful for, or send one email every day thanking or praising someone.

COMPLETED 22
DAILY ACTIONS

Community

Volunteer in My Community

Do at Home

I will volunteer 10 hour(s) in my community during the challenge.

Completed
One-Time Action

Action Track: Justice for the Whole Community

Reduce Single-Use Disposables

Do at Home

Historically, marginalized and low-income communities live closer to landfills, contributing to a multitude of health problems. I will find out how I can limit single-use items and do my best to limit the waste I generate. I will keep 1 container(s) out of the landfill each day.

COMPLETED 22
DAILY ACTIONS

Community

Connect with a Nonprofit

Do at Home

I will connect with a local nonprofit, environmental or otherwise, and find out how I can get involved or become a member.

Completed
One-Time Action

Community

Raise Money For a Nonprofit

Do at Home

I will raise money to support Ecochallenge.org or another nonprofit.

Completed
One-Time Action

Food

Use the sustainable palm oil app.

Download the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo's sustainable palm oil shopping app.

Completed
One-Time Action

Food

Buy orangutan-friendly candy this Halloween

Orangutans and many other animals are in danger due to unsustainable palm oil plantations, which destroy their forest homes. Palm oil can be found in many products—even candy! We are dedicated to caring for animals, so we encourage you to consider purchasing candy that contains sustainable palm oil. For a list of suggestions, please visit: https://www.stlzoo.org/files/9815/6985/6138/STLZoo_Candy_Guide_for_Holloween.pdf

Completed
One-Time Action

Feed


  • Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
    Pat Hofmeister 10/28/2020 12:14 PM
    I will really miss this challenge and hope we can do it again.  I have learned so much and definitely want to continue researching on topics covered in my ecochallenge while reaching out to thank or praise someone every day.  A big thanks to Katie and Rachel for setting this up for us.  I'd like to end with a quote from Mr. Rogers (Fred):  
    "We live in a world in which we need to share responsibility.  It's easy to say, 'It's not my child, not my community, not my world, not my problem.'  Then there are those who see the need and respond.  I consider those people my heroes."  Those of you who took this challenge and continue to practice what you've learned are also heroes!

    • Katie Emerick's avatar
      Katie Emerick 10/29/2020 6:35 AM
      Love this - thanks, Pat!

    • Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
      Pat Hofmeister 10/28/2020 5:02 PM
      Thanks, Jim  You have done such amazing work and have offered such great suggestions that I hope to use.  

    • Jim Stroeher's avatar
      Jim Stroeher 10/28/2020 4:27 PM
      Wonderful comment to end this portion of the challenge and a great motivation for use to conquer the ongoing challenge.

  • Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
    Pat Hofmeister 10/27/2020 8:52 AM
    While working on a challenge, I learned why all natives are called Indians!  When he landed in the Antilles, Columbus referred to the resident peoples he encountered there as "Indians", reflecting his belief that had reached the Indian Ocean.  The name stuck; for centuries the people of the Americas were collectively called "Indians" in various European languages (Wikipedia.org)

  • Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
    Pat Hofmeister 10/26/2020 7:18 PM
    Found a definition of sustainability that fits my mission for this challenge.  Sustainability means meeting our own needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.  In addition to natural resources, we also need social and economic resources. (www.mcgill.ca)
  • Reflection Question
    Action Track: Justice for the Whole Community Support Native Communities
    Indigenous speaker and activist Winona LaDuke says that, "most indigenous ceremonies, if you look to their essence, are about the restoration of balance — they are a reaffirmation of our relationship to creation. That is our intent: to restore, and then to retain balance and honor our part in creation." Why is balance important to sustainability?

    Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
    Pat Hofmeister 10/26/2020 6:55 PM
    We can achieve full sustainability if our natural resources are maintained, the environment is protected, the economy thrives and our quality of life is improved.
  • Reflection Question
    Action Track: Justice for the Whole Community Learn About Trans, Femme, and Nonbinary Experiences
    How is equality for trans, femme, and nonbinary people important to a just and sustainable society?

    Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
    Pat Hofmeister 10/26/2020 6:40 PM
    A just and sustainable society is where the needs of everyone in the community are met and people feel safe, healthy and ultimately happy. 
  • Reflection Question
    Action Track: Justice for the Whole Community Watch a Documentary about Racial Injustice
    What did you learn about racial injustice in the documentary(ies) you watched? How does what you learned connect to your understanding of sustainability?

    Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
    Pat Hofmeister 10/26/2020 6:27 PM
    1) Environmental issues disproportionately impact people of color (covid is an example).
    2) There's a lack of racial diversity among leadership of major environmental organizations.
    3) There's an insufficient transparency among environment funders.
    4)  One in 23 young white boys have a chance of going to prison while it's one in 4 for young black boys.

  • Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
    Pat Hofmeister 10/26/2020 2:12 PM
    Every day during this challenge, I've tried to discover more about recycling.  I was surprised to read this about paper bags.  We all know that plastic is terrible for the environment, and that plastic bags, in particular, are clogging up our oceans, choking our wildlife and generally wreaking havoc on the world.  Because of this, and because the paper bag industry has positioned itself as the solution for decades now, we rarely stop to ask a critical question:  Is paper actually that much better? The truth is, no.  It's not.  Paper does a lot of damage to the Earth as well, and every time we unthinkingly grab a few bags at the checkout counter, we contribute to that damage.  A study by the Northern Ireland Assembly in 2011 revealed that it takes more than four times as much energy to manufacture a paper bag as it does to manufacture a plastic bag.
    The answer to "Paper or plastic?" should actually be "Neither...I brought my own."  (Even now when we can't always bring in our own bags, a few of our zoo volunteers taking this challenge provided a solution.  Just have the groceries placed in your cart and then use your own bags when you get to your car!  So appreciative of this great idea!)

    • Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
      Pat Hofmeister 10/27/2020 8:40 AM
      Thanks, Jim.  Always good to hear from you as you have such great ideas.  We can't eliminate all plastic bags, but we are getting much better!

    • Jim Stroeher's avatar
      Jim Stroeher 10/26/2020 7:40 PM
      Pre-covid I would take a crate in to the grocery store and put everything in it. I would also use mesh bags for fruit and produce. Even with skipping the bag now and taking everything out in cart, I'm piling up produce bags. Lots of fruit and produce I don't bother bagging but some I have no choice.
  • Reflection Question
    Water Mulch the Base of Trees and Plants
    Where are your nearest natural bodies of water? How might they be affected by runoff?

    Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
    Pat Hofmeister 10/25/2020 8:55 PM
    I live in Sugar Creek Valley in Kirkwood.  There is a Sugar Creek which is affected by runoff.  Kirkwood keeps upgrading efforts to keep the creek flowing smoothly.  Mulching helps keep runoff manageable.

  • Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
    Pat Hofmeister 10/25/2020 7:21 AM
    I learned from reading Margaret Stoneman Douglas's book, The Everglades, River of Grass, that while President Nixon "often demonized environmentalists as radical leftists, he also created the Environmental Protection Agency and signed an array of sweeping environmental laws, including the Endangered Species Act."
  • Reflection Question
    Nature Support Local Pollinators
    Why is it important to take care of pollinators?

    Pat  Hofmeister's avatar
    Pat Hofmeister 10/24/2020 9:01 AM
    Wildlife pollinators are responsible for helping over 80% of the world's flowering plants which helps create a healthy ecosystem.  Pollinators help provide nutritious fruits, vegetables, and nuts for wildlife and people, and also help propagate plants that stabilize the soil, buffer the waterways, store carbon and provide habitat.
    The majority of flowering plants species world-wide need animal-mediated pollination to make the seeds that will become the next generation of plants.
    If bees disappeared off the face of the earth, man would only have four years left to live.
      (Einstein)