Parents of Influence

4 waste products my family wasn’t sorting properly

Sunshine Lily is a mom of two who makes a conscious effort to help the planet when she can. Here’s how she got her twin boys to help her divert waste from landfills.

By Sunshine Lily

4 waste products my family wasn’t sorting properly
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Treat every day like Earth Day! That’s what I told myself back in 2019 when I made the conscious effort to encourage the family to do better when it came to living more green and doing good for the environment.

Both Hubby and I recycle, compost and only try to put what we need to in the garbage. Do we do it properly? I would say yes, most of the time, and for the times that I’m unsure, my go-to was usually tossing it in the trash bin. Don’t judge me—I’m human. But now, with kids who are growing up and going to school, I want to set a good example and get my kids into consistent habits. They are, of course, the next generation who will continue to care for the environment.

For us, the best way to learn the basics is setting a good example at home. We discovered to get the boys committed, we had to get them involved in the process—and it was a lot easier than I thought with the help of GLAD waste bags. That’s right, GLAD offers a wide range of strong, reliable products (garbage, recycling, compost) that enables everyone to do their part. They are committed to reducing the environmental footprint and they are also on a mission to help divert 3 million tonnes of waste from landfills by 2030, which in turn will help to create a brighter future for our kids. Sharing with my kids what other people and companies do to help out drives the message that there is a greater good we’re all part of that’s making a difference.

4 waste products my family wasn’t sorting properly

We also chatted about what recycling meant, what should go in the garbage versus recycling and how important it is to place the items in the correct bin. They knew a lot more than I thought and I was surprised. Actually, I was really proud of them! They learned some of the basics at school and they reminded me that they also have a litterless lunch program in place. After that, we took a deep dive into things we weren’t certain about how to dispose of in our area, and we discovered there were some things we had wrong:

The top four things my family wasn’t sorting correctly in our area

  1. Biodegradable diapers: They get placed in the compost bin
  2. Chopsticks: They must be put in the garbage and are not compostable, like we thought
  3. Paper takeout containers: If lined with wax or plastic, it goes in the garbage bin, but otherwise anything food-soiled goes in the compost and unsoiled into the recycling bin
  4. Coffee pods: We thought these were recyclable, but they have to go to the garbage—this one was a big surprise to me

Every city or region has different rules when it comes to waste diversion, so make sure you familiarize yourself with yours—and realize it might change even if you just move a few minutes away from where you were. We use the Toronto Waste Wizard for guidance.

It’s hard to remember sometimes that making little changes together means we can make a difference. It’s something I know my boys now share with me and hopefully something they can share with their friends to get the whole community involved. For more information about GLAD’s commitment for change as well as their waste-management products, visit their website.

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4 waste products my family wasn’t sorting properly 4 waste products my family wasn’t sorting properly
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