Green Relief - Earth Friendly Alternatives to Relief Goods
Now that the worse is hopefully over for most of us, it's time to help out those devastated by the floods.
Like every normal citizen in our country, my eyes were glued to the news during the 2 day ordeal. The reports were filled with images of people stuck in their houses, flood waters teeming with garbage and people sending out relief.
Relief goods usually consist of instant noodles, canned goods, crackers, bottled water and rice that are stuffed into plastic bags.
This post is not meant to chastise or discourage those who donate by sending in these products. I am writing this in the hopes of being able to enlighten and spread awareness towards alternative ways and means you can donate.
When I think about it, the reason why most people donate instant noodles and sardines most of the time is because it is cheap and easy. Easy to buy, easy to cook and easy to transport. It is also the most common items I hear mentioned by the media in their broadcasts. Instant noodles and sardines have been the staple relief since it's existence. But our world is changing and so should are ways. Just remember that the more processed a product is, the larger its carbon footprint. And why would we want to promote that? Since that is predominantly the source of all our modern woes.
When you head to the grocery and make a beeline for the dry goods section, just remember this: you are only creating a temporary solution to a bigger problem and at the same time also probably feeding the virus that started this whole tragedy anyway. Canned goods and processed foods are manufactured in large factories which emit enormous amounts of greenhouse gasses and pay little attention to giving back to the environment. I can just imagine these giants laughing their way towards the bank after every calamity (that's the "rage against the machine" part of me talkoing ;))Not to mention the gasoline you yourself need in order to get yourself to the grocery and then transport to the relief centers. So instead, why not donate money (hopefully via cell or internet) to organized soup kitchens? If you feel iffy about handing your money to total strangers then why not ask what ingredients they need and buy that instead?
On the other hand, if you want to form your own sort of relief with your friends and family, hard-boiled eggs, saba and camote are cheap and easy items to prepare, easy to transport,pack and eat without the use of utensils. If you have other suggestions please feel free to add in the comments section below.
And lastly, the most important aspect of all is prevention. Let us be aware of what we throw out so tragedies like these can be avoided.
Yes, now is the time to freak out about plastic containers and sanitary napkins. You don't want your children's children living in a world strewn with discarded sanitary napkins. Yuck! So what to do? No need to drip like a dog in heat. Check out the Mooncup and the Moontimes. They both offer modern alternatives to the sanitary pad.
And although we've found some ingenius ways to reuse plastic bottles, I think we have enough lying around to last centuries. So before grabbing a bottle of 1.5 soda, grab a can instead. Or better yet, totally nix soda out of your diet. It's bad for you and it'll only make you fat...yes even the zero variants.
In light of this, I'd like to personally thank all the brave volunteers who have been risking their lives night and day to offer their assitance to those in need of saving. Hats off to you and I hope you guys will be recognized for you selflessness and determination throughout this ordeal. May God bless you all.