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Sustainable Living

junk kouture
Pictured: A Shoulder to Crayon, Ursuline Secondary School. This design was made from melted crayons, markers, used erasers, and pen exteriors.

Collective individual action and lifestyle shifts can be a dynamic part of climate action. From choosing eco-friendly hotels and fashion to dining in low waste restaurants, we can all be a part of the solution.

The Sustainable Living program brings together a diverse array of events to inspire everyone to be an ally to our planet and shares tips on how our day to day can be transformative to ourselves and the environment.

Here are some resources to help you learn more:


What is Sustainable Living?

Sustainable living is a lifestyle that strives to reduce our individual impact on the environment by using less of the Earth's resources. Sustainability looks different for everyone and can be incorporated into our lives through many different actions, adjustments, and lifestyle shifts. 

The Future Of Sustainability Should Look A Little Like My Family’s Basement

"Sustainable fashion should not be overpriced or marketed as a new phenomenon. My family proves it works when it's not. When your community is taken care of by its members, there is incentive to look out for those growing up after you. The pride I have in my culture is evident in my speech, my mannerisms, and every pre-worn garment I put on."

Beginner's Guide to Zero Waste

Zero waste aims to redesign our "take, make, and waste" culture and system of producing and consuming and instead opt for a more circular system where we use less and reuse more.

Junk Kouture Takes Upcycling to New Levels

In its most simple form, upcycling can be reusing a jelly jar or revamping an old chair instead of buying a new one. Junk Kouture demonstrates upcycling in its most inspiring light. See how three students turned 150 milk cartons, LCD computer screens, and fishing line into a breathtaking gown called, 'Plastic Surgery'. This will make you reconsider how you see junk. 

What is Composting?

Isaias Hernandez, @queerbrownvegan, breaks down what composting is, and why it is ultimately beneficial to the environment. If you are interested in starting your own compost, scroll down to our 'Watch' section and check out the video on composting for beginners.  


Junk Kouture uses their platform to allow teenagers to get creative and shine a light on the need for positive climate action.

‘Junk Kouture: Behind The Seams’ highlights the creative process behind the design all before taking to the catwalk at the live event. Participants detail how to start the climate change conversation and how teenagers can take action. 

"The zero-waste movement felt very exclusive. It had sort of a privileged veil over it and the conversations that were taking place in the zero-waste community never paid homage to the black and indigenous cultures who created that mandala to be zero-waste or to be resourceful. Being resource is something communities of color have had to do for generations."

Dominique Drakeford @dominiquedrakeford


How to Upcycle

Upcycling, or creative reuse, is the process of transforming something that otherwise would have been tossed, recycled, or forgotten into a product that is often more beautiful or functional. We can 'up' the value of an item or material by creating something new that we would like, like a planter out of a paint can. Or, we can consider something that we want to give a second life to, like old records or bottle caps.

National Farmers Market Directory

Eating locally not only cuts down on the time and energy it takes your food to arrive at your plate, but is also a great way to invest in your community. Use this tool to locate your local farmers market. 


Shopping does not have to hurt your wallet or the planet. Opting for pre-loved, second-hand, or gently used items is a great way to both, extend the life of clothing and support a circular economy.  

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