Every year, people from around the world come together to participate in a challenge that is not only fun, but also beneficial to themselves, their communities and our planet. The Northwest Earth Institute’s EcoChallenge invites you to set personal sustainability and wellness goals that often lie outside of your comfort zone—and to stick with those goals for two weeks. It may sound impossible to change your behavior at the drop of a hat, or it may sound like one small change from one person just won’t make a difference! However, each action is tallied on a platform that the NorthWest Earth Institute provides for participants, and when everything is added up, it’s clear how big of a difference each person has made. There is nothing better than sitting back and being genuinely being proud of your impact—which is why Beneficial State participates in the EcoChallenge.
Congratulations to this year’s Beneficial State EcoChallenge winners: Bethany, Jackie, and Amanda!
We asked our winners to share a few thoughts about how the EcoChallenge inspired them to make a well-being change:
Jackie Alcantar (Porterville, CA)
“I was born and raised in San Jose, CA. I moved to Porterville in September of 2016, and started to work with Beneficial State Bank in November of 2016 as a Legal Collection Department Representative. Beneficial State is an organization that encourages its employees to be ‘beneficial’ to their community and the earth. My own values align with the organization’s passion for environmental sustainability, and this year’s EcoChallenge inspired me to plant an herb garden. I was also encouraged to come out of my shell when I set a goal to chat with new colleagues and share ecofriendly tips. I felt proud to show my love for our planet and the people around me by participating in this fun workplace challenge!”
Amanda Wingfield (Porterville, CA)
“I was born and raised in the Central Valley, and I currently work in Beneficial State Bank’s Legal Collection Department. My hardest challenge was trying a new method of food preparation. As for my favorite result from the EcoChallenge—I now have a variety of plants in my kitchen! I was also able to involve my children in the goals I set for myself, which gave them the chance to learn more about the importance of environmental sustainability. This was a great introduction. I am planning on teaching my kids about other ways we can nurture our environment.”
Bethany Ambrosini (Porterville, CA)
“I was born and raised in the Central Valley. Due to the lack of water resources in this area, I focused on challenges that would help conserve water. I graduated from Fresno State with a Bachelor’s degree in business administration and option marketing. I have worked in the banking industry for more than twenty years, and the majority of those years were with Finance and Thrift Company. Currently, I work as a supervisor in Beneficial State Bank’s Legal Collection Department. I am married with two kids, and I enjoy going to the coast or Lake Tahoe in my free time.”
Overall, Beneficial State’s EcoChallenge team saved up to 350,265 gallons of water and prevented roughly 29,305 plastic bottles and cups from being sent to the landfill. We collectively spent roughly 268,886 more minutes outdoors than usual, and spent about 453,143 more minutes exercising!
Thank you to everyone who participated in this year’s EcoChallenge! I challenge everyone to keep up the good work, and to join us for next year’s challenge. Whether you’re thinking of bringing the EcoChallenge into a classroom, the workplace, or even your home—it’s a great way to see just how easily you can help decrease your carbon footprint and establish healthy habits.
Annette is a Beneficial Banker at Beneficial State Bank based in Visalia, CA.
This blog post reflects the author’s personal views and opinions, and does not represent the views and opinions of Beneficial State Bank and/or Beneficial State Foundation.