March Into Sustainability: Project Green Prom Video Contest!

pgp-video-contestMar. 1, 2009 How would you ‘green’ your high school prom?

The entire month of March you can film short 2-3 minute Project Green Prom video clips and upload them to YouTube here in show-n-tell style to inspire teens across the country to think about greener alternatives and compete for some AMAZING grand prizes, like a trip to the Big (green?) Apple!

I was so excited by all the amazing guest panels and go-getters at the Teens Turning Green summit a couple weeks ago, that I jumped right in with both feet and volunteered Shaping Youth as a partner org, helping to collect formalwear for Project Green Prom’s ‘new to you’ swap-n-shop opportunity as they set up an eco-event of emerging ideas and purposeful exchanges.

As my 13-year old “Taylor-Swift-look-alike” whirls around in a donated ‘Bebe’ ‘precycled’ gown with the tags still on, (thanks, Julie Higgins!) I realize it won’t be long before she’ll be in that world. (Heavy sigh felt through the keyboard, yes?)

MY challenge will be getting the gowns out the door (“we could do a promo fashion show, we could do a…” Halt. Boundary! Waaaaaaaay too thin here on the stretchometer as Gumby-girl these days, just help me collect the darn things!)


Project Green Prom challenges kids to think glam-n-green for healthier alternatives for themselves AND the planet. (from skin, hair and body care products to prom prep, event  décor, transportation, flowers, the works) And the video contest is a fun challenge to crowdsource cool ideas from green teens throughout the country before they launch the whole “Lights! Camera! Fashion!” whirlwind April 6 in N.Y. at Whole Foods Tribeca.

Whole Foods is the official sponsor of marketing this mindfulness, and also the distributor of the Teens Turning Green product line that rolled out nationally this past September. (videos here)

Personally, I’m still reeling from some of the ‘dirty thirty’ toxins found in my own daily routine (which believe me, isn’t much) so the organic ‘swag bags’ of green goodies and “better for you” alternatives at the Teens Turning Green summit really jolted me with a few wake-up calls on the ‘Search for a Cause’ cancer front. (TTG is a nonprofit project of Search for the Cause)

When you actually add up all the overkill that goes into the ‘rite of passage’ prom prep, it’s a perfect time to amp up the thoughtfulness on purchase power and smarter choices as green teens segue into adulthood…

pgp-contestThe posters at left will be downloadable for any and all to get your school involved or get the word out in general… details on the press page, and full toolkit coming soon on April 1st! It’s not your basic vamp-n-camp in front of a web cam contest…there’s got to be substantive thought and executable follow through if you’re trying to snag the pot-o-green gold…

Another caveat to be aware of it that teens MUST have the support of school administration to host a green prom and utilize the winning prize, so it’s not the time to be asking for ‘forgiveness rather than permission,’ unless you know you can pull it off and sweet talk admin into making it happen in a big way.

Shaping Youth is calling on closet keepers of “too elegant to part with it but when would I wear it again” offerings…to bring any and all gowns for Project Green Prom to GreenV Sustainable Center of SSF, which educates the public and supports design, construction and development professionals in their quest to use environmentally-friendly products and services.

greenv If you’re in the S.F. Bay Area, “Greenv” is a great spot to glean some inspiration, as they showcase green vendors of all sorts in their 27,000 sq. ft. facility. (I’ll bet we could even host some events there down the line, woohoo!) Special thanks go to fellow NextNow Collaboratory colleague Rick Rios of “Greenv” and Nataly Perez for her leads list of eco-conscious collegiate Greek chic pals.

If you’re elsewhere in the world, the Project Green Prom Toolkit will help you replicate and ‘go green’ wherever you are!

Time to ditch all those ‘always the bridesmaid’ dresses, shoes/accessories, sorority gowns, debutante balls, seemed like a good idea at the time-sale finds, etc.—C’mon, you know you want to…

ttg-collectionI bought the entire line of the new Teens Turning Green Collection to put it through the paces with some of our Shaping Youth teen teams, so maybe I’ll see if we can ask the “Greenv” eco store if we can plop it out there for prom season to promo the Project Green Prom concept. (worth a shot, but judging by this list of green building/showroom vendors, I doubt our nonprofits can afford it) I’m hooked on their “Pomegranate Cleansing Bar, (2nd from left) and the fresh citrus scent alone would lure in the lookey-lous to see what the project is about!

Speaking of worthy teen prom projects, watch for the fabulous Princess Project showrooms popping up around the region for scads of cash-strapped families who find a ‘strapless’ is hardly high on the priority list and gives girls a chance to ‘go to the ball’ so to speak…

Yes, it’s all FREE.


This year with the  economy down, the need for gowns will be UP; all the more reason to help out.

Here’s The Princess Project history, (herstory?) since its inception in 2002 when Laney Whitcanack and Kristen Smith Knutson donated “time, talent, and taffeta,” to spearhead what would become a nonprofit serving 9,000 girls via more than 700 volunteers.

The S.F. Princess Project dress giveaway is Sat., March 28, 2009 at Embarcadero 4 (where the Liz Claiborne store used to be) so I’m sure Project Green Teen will end up cross-pollinating in some manner…I’m hoping to volunteer for the event…

Sidenote: for a pithy princess post, you might want to also read Tracee’s  ‘Belle as a battered co-dependent’ Disney spin for a reality check on the whole fractured fairytale princess bit…Pretty hilarious.

girlsleadnowtagFor green projects of a different kind, Shaping Youth will be interviewing the teens behind Girls Lead Now (formerly Girls Economic Power Day) about their upcoming Sat., March 21, 2009 financial lifeskills and leadership event and teen clothing swap for girls 14-18…We’re hoping to align with them to promote the Project Green Prom concept too with their attendees in the south bay too… “It’s all good.”

Mind you, my Women 2.0 Jumpstart Your Startup professor, Naeem Zafar of Haas School of Business Berkeley, will wince that I’ve added yet another teen project to the plate, but I can’t quite contain my enthusiasm for like-minded orgs that ‘just do it’ and make change on the fly!

fairyBesides, now that I’ve ‘graduated’ from their great program, I’m ramped and ready to spend the spring and summer really focusing on sustainability and how to keep the lights on here without compromising ideals.

Not looking for a Cinderella story, per se, just maybe an angel investor or two…

If you have any philanthropic fairy godmothers…

Wave that wand my way next, will ya?

(Visual Credit above:

Resources At A Glance

Project Green Prom

Project Green Prom Video Contest Judges (Green DreamTeam!)

Teens Turning Green YouTube Channel

Teens Turning Green: On Facebook

Teens Turning Green: Search for the Cause Campaign

Teens Turning Green Summit Speakers (follow up to come)

Greeny Boppers: Teen Queens Turn Green (Alloy Girl)

Greenv Sustainable Center: Project Green Prom Gown Drop Off

Green Your Prom Video Contest (Green Daily)

Have a Green Prom (Smart Girls Know)

Related Faves & Fun Finds



The Find Green (Green Shopping)

Best Green Blogs (Visual Directories)

Ecobunga (Freebies/giveaways)

Greenraising (Green Fundraising)

Green Options Network

Eco Scraps (Tumblr style microblog)

Not Quite Crunchy Parent’s  Green Moms List

Project Green Prom Promo & Prizes: 1:52


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