Team Building Activities| Employee Engagement | Earth Day | FocusU

Eath Day Celebration

Not just a day – but a movement!

On January 28th, 1969, a well drilled by Union Oil Platform A off the coast of Santa Barbara, California, blew out. More than three million gallons of oil spewed, killing over 10,000 seabirds, dolphins, seals, and sea lions. As a reaction to this natural disaster, activists were mobilized to create environmental regulation, environmental education, and Earth Day. Among the proponents of Earth Day were the people in the front lines of fighting this disaster, Selma Rubin, Marc McGinnes, and Bud Bottoms, founder of Get Oil Out. More than 1 billion people now participate in Earth Day activities each year, making it the largest civic observance in the world.

How can your organization be a part of this movement?

The easiest way for you to get involved is to head straight to the website of the Earth Day Network – the world’s largest recruiter to the environmental movement, working with more than 50,000 partners in nearly 195 countries to build environmental democracy. The website is packed with ideas and inspiration for you to get started. It also has a separate section for tool kits that can be downloaded for free and shared with your team members.

We could also help you craft a few bespoke interventions that help your team be inspired to join into this wonderful movement. Here are 10 ideas to get you started:

The Terrarium Challenge – You must have heard of aquariums. But what is a Terrarium? In short it is a wonderful way to get your team to create their own private green zones or forests (depending on the size of their ambition) and either keep it on their tables or gift it to charity and inspire others!
The Outback Challenge – There is no better way to get back in touch with the Earth’s rhythms than to actually go outdoors and experience its many wonders. But what if you could do it in a gamified manner that also challenges the team and gets them closer together?
The Xtreme Challenge – Different folks – different strokes. Over the years we have realised that what is a superhit for one group – is outright boring for another. So for all those adrenalin junkies out there who want something much more racy and edgy, we put together the Xtreme Challenge – an experience of the power of nature.
Community Gardening – Gardening is a wonderful way to reflect on how much we depend on the earth for our survival. Most people would have never experienced the magic of rolling up their sleeves and digging up some earth. Gardening brings together diverse groups of people in an activity that not just involves team work and problem solving, but in something that many people find therapeutic. We would love to put together such a bespoke experience for your team.
Donate your clothes – It may not be so obvious, but manufacturing new clothing requires both energy and water – and there are plenty of people for whom your old, used clothing sitting in your closet untouched for years – makes all the difference. As Meenakshi Gupta, Co-founder of Goonj says, “What we consider as waste has the potential to become a strong resource for the most disenfranchised masses around the world”. Go on and encourage your team to bring all their old clothes. Organizations like Goonj will only be too happy to partner with you!
Unleash a Green Brainstorm – If you think about it, there are so many small ways in which each person in a team can contribute to be a teeny bit greener for the planet. Don’t keep the burden of ideation with you – run a company-wide brainstorm challenge on how to turn greener. Here are a few that one such brainstorm threw up:
• Car pool every day or use uber share
• Bike to office every day
• Shift to LED bulbs
• Use both sides of a paper
• Use paper cups instead of plastic ones
• Power down all unnecessary electricity guzzlers
• Run a GREEN themed team building – the next time around

You get the idea. It is not so difficult – and gets everyone involved and sensitised.
Save the Sparrows – That little friendly neighbourhood bird is missing. Chirps that welcomed us every morning are lost. Once widespread and abundant, the house sparrow has become a mystery bird and is becoming increasingly rare all over the world. The reasons are many – and most people don’t know. What if you organised a small intervention for your team that involved them building small sparrow houses that they could take home to invite some of these friendly birds back? The occasion could also be used to sensitise your team members on the many things that they could do to save the sparrows! Do contact us – we would love to put together such a bespoke experience for your team
The Graffiti Wall Challenge – Consider a building with a few broken windows. If the windows are not repaired, the tendency is for vandals to break a few more windows. Eventually, they may even break into the building, and if it’s unoccupied, perhaps become squatters or light fires inside. Or consider a sidewalk. Some litter accumulates. Soon, more litter accumulates. Eventually, people even start leaving bags of trash from take-out restaurants there or even break into cars. When people start perceiving that “no one cares” – the small crimes slowly start snow-balling into bigger ones. This is called the Broken Windows theory. What if your team could help nip this in the bud by transforming a place?
The Grassroots Challenge – Corporate teams working in swanky offices, sometimes tend to get cut off from the grassroots. How India lives a few levels down the societal pyramid is very often an eye opener for people in terms of seeing their own extravagant habits and lifestyles. However it is also a trigger for participants to realise that we could actually achieve a whole lot with very less resources at our disposal.
Watch Koyaanisqatsi – But what if you and your team live a super busy corporate life – and have no time for any of the above? In that case – Watch Koyaanisqatsi. Sometimes we get so caught up in the rat race that we fail to take stock of the damage we, collectively, are doing to the planet. This film by Godfrey Reggio is often called a cult movie. Named after a Hopi Indian word that means “life out of balance,” Koyaanisqatsi explores the relationship between technology and the environment in an apocalyptic film that doesn’t look so different from today’s reality. It will give you a serious wakeup call and inspire you and your team to do everything on this list every day of the year.

We love to put together bespoke work for our clients. So in case you have a half baked idea running in your head – do throw it at us and let us see what comes out of it!

Contact us today to make your Earth Day celebrations meaningful!