By Maddie Ferber
The end of 2023 approaches and with the change of seasons and the change of calendars we all begin to reflect on the past year, and look forward to what the future holds. Dubbed the giving season, this is a time not only for reflection, but also for giving, caring, and connecting. As we fill the long nights with twinkling lights, family, friends and community, we are reminded of the best parts of the human spirit – generosity, compassion, and a desire to make the world a better place. What better representation of our nature than the work of nonprofits? No matter the cause, you can find people working to make the world a better place, not for their own gain, but for the sheer need to help. Employing 12.5 million people, the nonprofit sector is the third largest employer in the US. With more than 64 million people serving as volunteers or board members, and at least 60% of Americans participating in some form of charitable giving, that adds up to an enormous amount of people who care.
As we look to the future and what the next year holds, these are the times we here at NRC dream of stepping stones to a more sustainable future. With the climate goalpost of 2025 looming closer and closer, your support of environmental organizations is more important than ever. Although many nonprofit organizations receive funding through grants or government contracts, this funding comes with strings attached – rules and guidelines that organizations must follow. Donations are an important source of unrestricted funding – allowing organizations to make mission-driven decisions, without influence of the values and guidelines set forth by other organizations and institutions.
Our mission is to maximize the economic and environmental benefits of resource recovery in Nebraska. Our vision is a future in which all materials are reserved for their highest and best use and landfill disposal is the last resort. Our great wish is to protect Nebraska’s good life for future generations.
Currently, in Nebraska, we have a 17% recycling rate, compared to the 32% national rate. We believe we can do better, and everyday NRC works to support that vision. At the Nebraska Recycling Council, we know the value of working towards a goal, driven not by profit, but by the potential for change.
Over the course of the last year, NRC has worked on
- Educational resources and events for recycling professionals and the public
- Webinars on behavior change and electronics recycling
- Annual Fall Conference
- Earth Day clothing swap – over a 1,000 items swapped
- Six scholarships to a Solid Waste Association of North America training and certification program on managing recycling systems.
- Innovative ag plastics recycling project
- Addressing recycling access for people with disabilities
- Research and data collection
- Annual “State of Recycling in Nebraska” survey
- Textile recycling in Nebraska
- Offered technical assistance in improving recycling programs, finding solutions to problems, or managing program changes to communities and businesses across Nebraska
- Worked with legislators to improve legislation and policy around recycling
Whether you choose to support NRC or another organization this year, we hope you choose to share your generosity with your community.
To all our supporters, whether you’ve given time, funds, or attention to our cause we thank you and wish you a warm and happy holidays in whatever ways you celebrate!