Learn How the Holidays Can Be D.O.W.N. with Sustainability

Gifting Sense was just at the 2018 TED Women’s Summit. As many people know, TED is a nonprofit devoted to spreading great ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks that cover almost any topic, from history to science, the arts, global, and even local issues, through their TEDx programming.

Over the course of this year’s Summit more than 50 presenters discussed their life’s work (thus far…as some TEDsters are still in high school!), and the various ways in which they have “Shown Up” to try and make the world a better place. It was an inspiring three days, highlighting how fortunate in particular Canadians are. It also gave us a new way to describe the work we are doing, thanks to Kate Brandt, Google’s Sustainability Officer.

As you might imagine, Google’s data centres are filled with giant servers that require a lot of energy. Ms. Brandt’s job is to help Google continue it’s work in a sustainable way, read reduce energy consumption. She believes in making it as easy as possible for people to make a positive impact and we like her thinking. Taking inspiration from nature, where she has witnessed some of the best Engineers in the world consistently repurpose and reuse various energy sources, she has developed a three-part strategy for achieving a “greener Google”:

1. Design out waste.
2. Keep products and materials in use as long as possible.
3. While continuing to transition to renewable energy.

Think about it: When a child researches the full value of a request and if they will really use and/or appreciate a gift, before they ask for it, waste is designed out of gift giving!

The minute we heard her approach, we recognized that we could describe the work we do, when helping parents teach their kids to think before they buy, in much the same way. Why? Because when a child researches the full value of a request and if they will really use and/or appreciate a gift, before they ask for it, waste is designed out of gift giving – and – products and materials are kept in use as long as possible. Not sure exactly how? Take three minutes to complete a Gift Survey right now. You’ll be one step closer to spending your time and money in the wisest way possible, teaching your kids how to do the same, and keeping the world green while you do it. Fewer unwanted gifts makes for reduced landfill contributions and carbon emissions (imagine never having to drive to the mall to return another holiday gift), not to mention happier children and extended family members.

Give your kids the gifts they want, and the gift they need (a quick but meaningful burst of financial education) every time they ask you for something, by simply suggesting they calculate the DIMS® (Does It Make Sense?) Score for their request. By doing so, on top of being a parent brave enough to talk to your kids about money, you’ll be D.O.W.N (designing out waste now) with sustainability. Now there’s an idea worth sharing!


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