Post-Landfill Action Network: A Student-led, Zero-waste Campus Movement

We build student-led, self-sustaining programs that reduce waste on college campuses. We envision a post-landfill society where the idea of waste is obsolete.
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Alex Freid
1,136 Facebook Friends
Environment
Durham, New Hampshire
United States
7 Team Members

About PLAN: The Post-Landfill Action Network

PLAN is a start-up nonprofit that helps college students create programs that reduce waste on campus. We provide start-up funding, leadership training, educational resources and discounts to help launch and support self-sustaining, student-led waste reduction programs in campus communities. Our vision is a nation-wide movement of student leaders working together to build a post-landfill society where the very concept of waste is obsolete. Your support will help kickstart this project and allow us to reach a point of self-suitability in just a few years.

We are excited to announce that Tom's of Maine will be matching up to $20,000 in contributions! We are very excited to have this pioneering company join our mission to build a zero-waste world. Please contribute now to double your impact!

Table of Contents: Click To Jump!

  1. Upcycled Perks for Donors
  2. How Plan Started
  3. Our Phased Approach
  4. Why We Need a PLAN
  5. Our Work So Far
  6. What Your Donation Supports
  7. How You Can Help
  8. Our Board of Directors, Advisors, and Community Supporters

Upcycled Perks for Donors

To say "thank you" for your donation, we've made a variety of upcycled gifts that you can choose from! Each of the items were handmade by PLAN volunteers using recycled materials, and will be sent out at the conclusion of the campaign in September. Below, you can see pictures of all the items, as well as a table that explains your choices at each donation level; or, see the perk listings on the right side of this page for more details about what you'll get. We'll reach out to you after you donate to determine what perks you would like to recieve.

You can also click here to skip this section and continue reading about PLAN instead.

Upcycled Perks for Donors

How PLAN Started: Trash 2 Treasure at the University of New Hampshire (UNH T2T)

In 2010 a group of undergraduates at the University of New Hampshire noticed that students threw away thousands of reusable items when they moved out. They learned that each spring, the amount of waste sent to the local landfill jumped from 25 tons to a staggering 105 tons. 

The students fundraised over $9,000 to launch a program that diverted reusable goods away from the local landfill by collecting them in the spring and selling them at a yard sale over move-in weekend. The sale was an enormous success, earning more than enough to cover the program's costs. In its first 3 years, UNH T2T has:

  • Diverted over 100 tons of waste from UNH's waste stream
  • Achieved over $30,000 in sales
  • Donated 5 tons of food and clothing to local shelters
  • Saved UNH $10,000 in waste disposal costs
  • Saved students and families an estimated $125,000 by selling goods at steep discounts compared to local big box stores

Our Phased Approach

Following the early success of Trash 2 Treasure at UNH, the students behind the program began working to bring this initiative to other schools. They created PLAN: The Post-Landfill Action Network. PLAN will work with student groups and universities in each of three phases.

Phase 1: Accelerated Launch

Paying for year-one expenses like truck and storage rental is the largest barrier to starting a move-out waste reduction program. That’s where our Accelerated Launch program comes in. Through a competitive application process, we will identify student leaders to receive start-up funding to launch a PLAN program on their campus. We’ll work closely with those students and administrators to get the program off the ground so that it is self-sustaining by its second year. The application for Accelerated Launch is available now at PostLandfill.org/Apply!

Phase 2: Membership Network

For campuses with existing move-out waste reduction programs, we offer membership services that help students and universities expand and improve their ongoing initiatives. Membership benefits include consulting services, discounts on program costs like truck and storage rental, access to online resources and education, and other customized support.

Phase 3: Beyond the Sale

Reducing move-out waste is just the beginning. In Phase 3, we will guide student organizers through a step-by-step campus waste audit. We’ll work with students, administrators, and our network of sustainability partners to design new ways to reduce waste on campus year-round. Additionally, revenue from the yard sale can be used to fund new and innovative sustainability initiatives on campus like organic gardening or renewable energy generation.

Why We Need a PLAN

EarthThe way we use and dispose of Earth’s resources is fundamentally broken. We extract resources to make consumer goods, which soon end up in landfills. But our planet’s resources are not infinite, and our trash is toxic. Eliminating waste helps solve both ends of this problem. In the spirit of “think globally, act locally,” PLAN is beginning by tackling waste on college campuses – where students recognize that we must protect the planet we will inherit. 

Our Work So Far

Over a year ago, we began laying the foundation for the expansion of this program to the national scale. Today we have huge momentum, a dedicated team of organizers and advisors, and a wide network of supporters in the sustainability arena. Here are some of our recent successes:

  • Secured a 6-month residency at the New Hampshire Innovation and Commercialization Center, a shared working space in downtown Durham. 
  • Established a partnership agreement with the University of New Hampshire to pilot Phase 3 waste reduction initiatives and conduct a full waste audit. 
  • Received the $10,000 Samuel Huntington Public Service Award.
  • Established two paid PLAN internships supported by UNH’s Center on Social Innovation and Finance and the Steelman Fellowship through UNH’s College of Health and Human Services.

What Your Donation Supports

We’re passionate about helping other students bring this program to their campus – but to build out PLAN on a national scale, we need your support. Your donation will help kickstart our work as a national nonprofit. 

Together with a team of advisors in nonprofit management, business development and social entrepreneurship, we’ve put together a three year roadmap for PLAN, after which point we will be independently sustained by membership fees from the schools we work with. That roadmap has us on track to meet the following goals:

Year One: 3 new Accelerated Launch programs, 12 member schools
Year Two: 6 new Accelerated Launch programs, 24 member schools
Year Three: 8 new Accelerated Launch programs, 60 member schools

We can reduce thousands of tons of waste by reaching these schools – but first, we have to meet our fundraising goals. Your donation will support our ongoing development work including:

  • Creation of resources for students like best-practice guides and waste and sustainability fact sheets.
  • Outreach to university sustainability offices and direct engagement with student groups to identify common challenges and opportunities to launch new programs and improve and expand existing initiatives.
  • Development of our nonprofit business infrastructure including strategic and financial planning, incorporation and 501(c)(3) certification, web development, and more.
  • Expansion of our network of sustainable business partners including trucking, storage, waste-hauling, composting and recycling companies.

Additionally, IndieGoGo recieves a small percentage of funds raised as a platform fee. Reaching or exceeding our goal of $50,000 signficantly reduces this fee. Our goal reflects a very conservative projection for PLAN's growth – but there are dozens of schools who are eager to work with us. Exceeding our goal of $50,000 will allow us to reach more campuses more quickly and reduce far more waste on each campus. The more we raise, the more we can do!

Update [7/12/13]: Donations will pass through our nonprofit fiscal sponsor, Climate Counts. This allows your contribution to be tax deductible via Climate Counts' 501(c)(3) designation, while PLAN's own 501(c)(3) application is under review. 

How You Can Help

There are lots of ways you can support PLAN and this fundraising campaign. 

  • Donate! Your contribution will help us keep thousands of tons of toxic trash out of landfills near college communities. Every donation helps us reach our goal. Plus, you'll get some cool upcycled rewards handmade by PLAN volunteers!
  • Share this campaign on social media pages, by email, or by carefully reading the URL to your mom over the phone. Besides donating, sharing is the best thing you can do to help us meet our goal! Click to go to your Facebook or Twitter, and see below for a template post or email you can use to easily share this project.
  • Like PLAN on Facebook or follow us on Twitter so we can stay in touch!
  • Contact us! Do you know of a company who we should partner with, an artist who turns trash into treasures, or a student group ready to bring PLAN to their campus? Write to Alex@PostLandfill.org.

To make sharing easy, we've written out some text that you can copy, paste, and adapt as you please. Thank you for sharing this fundraiser widely!

Dear _______,

I am writing to share with you a project that I feel is very imporant. PLAN: The Post-Landfill Action Network is a nonprofit being launched by a group of recent graduates from the University of New Hampshire. As students, they started a program to reduce waste by collecting items students would have otherwise thrown out at the end of the school year then selling it all at a yard sale over move-in weekend. Their initiative at UNH was so successful that they've created PLAN, which will provide start-up funding and support to students at other schools who want to create waste reduction initiatives on their own campuses. 

To cover start-up expenses and the first round of funding for schools, PLAN launched an online fundraiser to raise $50,000 by September 5. They're off to a good start but still need more support – so I'm writing to ask your help. Visit http://igg.me/at/PLAN to see a video from their team and read more about the project. They're also offering handmade upcycled items as perks for donors. If you're not able to make a donation, you can also support PLAN by passing this along to 5 people who you know particularly care about the planet. You can also like and follow them on Facebook and Twitter! Thank you!

The People Behind PLAN

Our Board of Directors

Board of Directors

Our Team of Advisors

advisors

Supporters in the Community and at UNH

community supporters

Credits

We'd like to extend our sincere thanks to everyone who has helped shape PLAN and to everyone who has contributed to the success of UNH Trash 2 Treasure over the last three years. We would especially like to thank the following individuals for their contributions to this page:

Our IndieGoGo video was produced and edited by Scott Ripley.

The photos of our upcycled perks were taken by Raya Al-Hashmi. Raya is a recent UNH graduate and an aspiring photojournalist – check out her website here.

We would also like to thank to our local supporters: Eco Kids, Scythe Supply, Charlie Preston, Devitt Liptak Design and Déjà vu Consignment Shoppe

 

Click here to return to the top of the page to donate now!

Find This Campaign On
$9,442USD
raised by 148 people in 2 months
19% funded
No time left
Verified Nonprofit
$50,000 USD goal
Flexible Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on September 5, 2013
Select a Perk
  • $10USD
    Supporter

    Thanks for your support! Your donation will help us save 167 pounds of clothing next year! You’ll get a downloadable PDF guide with step-by-step instructions for upcycling crafts you can do at home, a 1-year subscription to our membership list-serv, and you’ll be listed in a shout-out on our social media pages at the end of this campaign!

    21 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $25USD
    Dumpster Diver

    You’re an official Dumpster Diver! Your donation will help us save and donate 313 pounds of food next year! You’ll get a PLAN postcard and sticker, a 1-year subscription to our membership list-serv, AND an upcycled notepad made from one-sided paper and a cereal box cover.

    23 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $50USD
    The Green Thumb

    You’ve officially grown your Green Thumb! Your donation will help us save 30 lamps next year! You’ll get a PLAN postcard and sticker, a 1-year subscription to our membership list-serv, AND a package deal: an upcycled notepad, 3 bottle cap candles, and a can-dle holder made from an aluminum can.

    8 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $100USD
    Activist

    You’re a committed activist, and your donation will help us save 24 microwaves next year! You’ll get a PLAN sticker and postcard, a 1-year subscription to our membership list-serv, and you can choose 3 upcycled items from Group A (see items available to the left).

    11 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $250USD
    Eco-Warrior

    You’re an Eco-Warrior! Your donation will help us save 227 rugs next year! You’ll get a PLAN sticker and postcard, a 1-year subscription to our membership list-serv, and you can choose from 3 upcycled items in Group A, AND 1 upcycled item from Group B (see items available to the left).

    2 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $500USD
    Influential Organizer

    You’re an Influential Organizer! Your donation will help us save 149 fans next year! You’ll get a PLAN sticker and postcard, a 1-year subscription to our membership list-serv, and you can choose from 4 upcycled items in Group A or B AND 1 upcycled Item from Group C (see items available to the left).

    1 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $1,000USD
    Reduction Expert

    You’re a Reduction Expert! Your donation will help us save 240 televisions next year! You’ll get a PLAN sticker and postcard, a 1-year subscription to our membership list-serv, and you can choose from 8 upcycled items in Groups A, B, or C (see items available to the left).

    0 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $2,500USD
    Recycler Extraordinaire

    Your donation constitutes half of the start-up costs of an Accelerated Launch school, so you will be formally recognized as one of the co-sponsor of one new program! You’ll also get a PLAN sticker and postcard, a 1-year subscription to our membership list-serv, and you can choose from up to 10 Upcycled items of your choice from Groups A, B or C. Finally, you’ll get a gift basket of items donated by local NH businesses (approximately $250 retail value).

    0 out of 3 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $5,000USD
    Landfill Eliminator

    Your donation will support an entirely new Accelerated Launch program, and you’ll be formally recognized as the sponsor of that program. You’ll also get a PLAN sticker and postcard, a 1-year subscription to our membership list-serv, and up to 10 upcycled items of your choice. Finally, 2 PLAN volunteers will do 5 hours of work on a project of your choice, from yard work to community service (within 50 miles of Seacoast NH).

    0 out of 5 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $7,500USD
    Planet Protector

    Your donation will cover start-up costs for a program at a large university, keeping hundreds of tons of toxic waste out of the ground! In addition to receiving all the perks from the previous tier, you’ll be formally identified as a Silver Founding Sponsor on our website and will be treated to a dinner in Portsmouth, NH by PLAN’s founder (transportation not provided).

    0 out of 4 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
  • $10,000USD
    Zero-Waste Guru

    You’re a Zero-Waste Guru! Your donation will cover start-up costs for programs at two universities, and you’ll be formally recognized as those projects’ sponsor. You’ll receive all the perks from the previous tier, will be listed as a Gold Founding Sponsor and will be treated to an afternoon exploring Seacoast New Hampshire’s natural beauty, visiting innovative local sustainability projects, and enjoying dinner and culture in historic Portsmouth, NH with PLAN’s founder and its lead organizers.

    0 out of 2 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2013
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