"Changing the world with our own two hands!" 🤲
Be the Change Community is an incredible group led by the unstoppable Rose Weinberg and JD Eichler. They're doing such great things in the US, and now overseas, that we thought it was about time we interviewed them.
Tell us a bit about yourself
Founded by Rose Weinberg and JD 'Jonathan' Eichler April 11, 2019, Be the Change Community initially started as a Facebook Group dedicated to giving like minded WOMXN looking for personal development and growth a safe haven to run to!
We still run this group, 127 strong and target 7 main areas of personal development daily, including: mental, physical, emotional, social, spiritual, self, family and goal development; plus womxn empowerment, health and wellness and community service.
When we started hosting our Community Cleanups as a form of community service in June of 2019, the response was incredible and we had more than just our womxn's group wanting to help! We have slowly developed, from the small womxn's group we were back in April '19, to the Be the Change Community we are today! A group of like minded HUMANS coming together for one common goal... to Be the Change We Wish to See in the World. Be the Change Community is in the business of changing and shaping lives. The work we do at our Non-Profit Organization is aimed at providing a holistic approach to solving some of our society's biggest challenges.
We do this by providing Environmental Stewardship and Humanitarianism opportunities for our community:
Community Service Opportunities
Annual Donation Drives
Emergency Donation Drives
Monthly Meal Service
Tree or Native Species Plantings & Invasive Species Removal
Virtual Education & Volunteering Opportunities
Virtual DIY Nights
We will continue to be the "see a need, fill a need" organization we have become, connecting People to People and People to Resources, making volunteering as easy as "signing up" and showing up!
Had you ever litter-picked before?
We had litter picked prior to the formation of Be the Change Community, but never on such a large and widespread scale.
How did you get involved with just1bag2020?
We met Just1Bag2020 through joining the 1PieceArmy around the start of the pandemic in 2020 and LOVED their mission so much that we started tagging them in all of our Scheduled Pick Ups and #5MinuteCleanups.
What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever found?
JD: "A bag of mothballs (that we originally thought was a bag of drugs so we called the police dept. and an officer came out to investigate before we touched it... only to find out it was moth balls!)"
Rose: "A pump sprayer in the ocean, a garland interlaced into the sand, a bocce ball, Barbie Legs in the Forest.. (just the legs) and a plastic bottle embedded into the earth (like sedimentary rock). 🤯
What’s your favorite thing or place to litter pick? Favorite Thing: Cans and Bottles; because we can recycle these at our local bottle drop (for 10¢ each) to fund more Be the Change Community cleanups.
Favorite Place: Truthfully anywhere and everywhere! It's the BEFORE and AFTERS that get us! What is the best thing someone has said to you while you were litter picking? JD: "All of the Thank Yous; especially the ones from the kids!" Rose: "I want to be a part of what you're doing, how can I get involved?" Has picking up litter led to any changes in your day-to-day life? JD: "Yes, totally, from refusing single use plastic bags, stubbornly carrying my items out by hand instead, to going out of our way to drive to our local dump to make sure our trash is being disposed of properly. Just the simple act of picking up trash has made us contemplate other simple changes we can make to be part of the solution, not the problem." Rose: "Litter picking has led to so many other eco-friendly or mindful changes in our day-to-day life, but I think the most important change has to be our perspective. We have found that with awareness comes a need, want or responsibility to ACT and from this, taking ACTION is INEVITABLE."
What has litter-picking taught you? JD: "Litter picking has taught me that many people believe in the "out of sight, out of mind" attitude, but when you litter, it doesn't go away or go somewhere, it stays there, around you, in your neighborhood, in your yard, in your parks." Rose: "Litter picking has taught us so much, but if I had to pick three of our most important takeaways they would be:
Awareness is one of the keys to change; if humans are unaware of the problem, they can do nothing to fix it. Only when the human mind is fully aware of the facts and realities of this world will true change be possible.
No matter what state, country or nation you live in, you can ALWAYS find litter.
Humans have more in common with one another than we were raised to believe, no matter where in the world we come from.
What would you say to someone who’s yet to collect just one bag?
Just start! Once you collect your first piece or your first bag, you will find an appreciation for and understanding of Mother Earth and Nature like you have never known before.
What's next for Be The Change Community? Our goals for 2021 include:
Full recovery (from our auto accident injury) so that we can get back to our Be the Change Community duties.
To license and register our non-profit with 501c3 Status in the United States and NGO Status in Nigeria, Africa.
International Branch Expansion and Start Ups; introducing Be the Change Community to other states, countries and nations.
Continuing to host our monthly or bi-monthly donations drives for our local shelters in Oregon and Calgary, Canada; with plans for expansion into Phoenix, Arizona and other US States.
Getting back to our Daily #5MinuteCleanups, restarting our monthly cleanups sponsored by SOLVE and starting monthly river/waterway cleanups sponsored by The Vayyu Foundation and U|Ocean Project USA.
Restarting our Monthly Tree Plantings and Invasive Species Removal with Friends of Trees, virtually or independently.
Replanting the Riverside with the Clackamas River Basin Council (2020 Wildfire Recovery)
Supporting 1PieceArmy, Harper's Army and Just1Bag2020 on their new adventure(s) and mission to get into schools around the world; working closely with our local schools and community to educate the youth.
Continuing to provide a platform where humans can gain ideas and tackle weekly challenges to spread Random #ActsOfChange and Kindness.
Continuing to host our monthly #VirtualDIYNights; teaching our communities how to upcycle the items in their recycling bin or turn trash into treasures.
Finally, don't forget about their monthly #VirtualDIYNights that are tailored to create upcycled DIY projects to spread awareness and create a community of upcyclers. Nothing is wasted!!