One of the most commonly asked questions Sea Turtle Conservancy (STC) hears is, “How can I help sea turtles?” We know our supporters come from all over the world and not everyone lives near the beach, so we’ve compiled a list of easy ways you can help sea turtles every day. The best part about this list? You can do these activities no matter where you live!
1. Reduce, Reuse and Recycle: An easy way to help protect sea turtles and our environment is to get into the habit of recycling and buying products that allow you to avoid trashing plastic all together. Try reusable water bottles and reusable grocery bags. You can even purchase a great STC reusable bag here. An added perk to using these tote bags is that they won’t rip on you and can carry up to 25 pounds! Plastic bags often end up in our waterways as litter and when that happens, a sea turtle could confuse the bag for a jellyfish and try to eat it. Over 100 million marine animals are killed each year due to plastic debris in the ocean and it is expected that another 60 billion pounds will be produced this year alone. In some areas, the buildup of plastics is estimated to span 5 million square miles, which is equivalent to the area of the United States and India combined.
2. TerraCycle: Unlike local recycling programs, TerraCycle accepts waste that is harder to categorize and items you probably didn’t realize you could recycle, such as old make-up containers, cheese packaging, shampoo bottles, etc. The lists of things you can recycle is quite extensive and really makes a difference in the amount of “trash” you throw away each month. All you have to do is choose a collection “brigade”, and when you’re ready to send in your items, contact STC so we can send you our official TerraCycle shipping label. This label is specific to STC and allows us to receive the donated funds. Shipping is free but limited to the United States only.
TerraCycle either recycles or upcycles the trash into new products such as bicycle chain picture frames, circuit board coasters, Biodegradable Fiber Pots, Capri Sun backpacks, bathroom cleaners and newspaper pencils. Check out the full list! Popular brigades that STC participates in include: Tom’s of Maine products, Hummus containers, Cheese packaging, and Dairy tubs.
Contact Becca at STC to get more information or to receive a shipping label: Becca@conserveturtles.org
3. SecondWave Recycling: SecondWave focuses solely on recycling cell phones. The materials that go into a cell phone have more than just one life and can be used for new technology. This program also keeps phones out of landfills which prevents harmful toxins from potentially seeping into waterways. Simply visit http://secondwaverecycling.com to fill out a request for an envelope and enter ‘Sea Turtle Conservancy’ into the ‘CAUSE’ section of either form you choose. It’s free and easy for you to do and benefits STC & sea turtles by directing donations to STC and keeping the environment clean! SecondWave donates 100% of the wholesale value of the phone to STC, and the value depends on the quality of the phone. The better the phone, the more we receive. (US only)
4. Amazon Smile: Another outlet for donation is through Amazon Smile. It’s the same Amazon you already know but instead of just receiving the products you buy, your money is also going towards your favorite cause, protecting sea turtles! Amazon Smile donates 0.5% of your purchase price to STC, once you register under our organization. Just visit smile.amazon.com, sign in if you’re already an Amazon member or create an account, then type in Sea Turtle Conservancy in the causes/donation search bar. It’s super easy and you might feel better about spoiling yourself with a little online shopping if it sends some of the money back towards sweet sea turtles!
5. Goodsearch: A charitable cousin of Yahoo, Goodsearch allows you to search for information on the internet while giving back to a charity of your choice! Its the same search engine as Yahoo and contains the same information, but while you’re searching, you’re donating. Register and type in Sea Turtle Conservancy into your cause search bar and it should pop up as STC- Sea Turtle Conservancy. You raise 1 cent per search, which can really add up!
And there are even more ways to raise donations through Goodsearch! These partner sites can be found on their search engine website underneath “more ways to raise.”
The great thing is, you can explore all the different Goodsearch sites and you won’t have to re-enter any information on your donations because they transfer over to each site– less hassle and more donations!
Lastly, one of the best things you can do for sea turtles is to spread the word. There are so many easy, daily ways everyone can help sea turtles and the environment that might have been a surprise to you and will probably be a surprise to others. Make sure to share this information with your friends!