Miami Waterkeeper Junior Ambassador, Jaïm Steele, recently noticed some discord within his community of Coconut Grove homeowners regarding the disposal of pet waste in resident trash bins. In short, some folks were fine with a doggy bag of waste being dumped in their bin, while others were not!
Pet waste, when not properly disposed of, can contribute to nutrient loading in stormwater runoff. Too many nutrients accumulating in our waterways can lead to things like algae blooms and seagrass die-offs in Biscayne Bay. Jaïm, knowing the importance of proper pet waste disposal, launched a new effort called "Yes Poo, No Poo" to help his neighbors (and our waterways) out!
Jaïm saw a simple solution to this unique problem. “Yes Poo, No Poo”, is an initiative to help homeowners understand where pet waste should and shouldn’t go. Stickers are sold through the Yes Poo, No Poo website. Community members simply stick on a "Yes-poo" or "No-poo" sticker on their trash bin to indicate whether or not pet waste disposal is appropriate! The money raised from these sticker sales is donated to 3 organizations, including Miami Waterkeeper! Jaïm has already raised over $1000 and is looking forward to expanding his impact.
Miami Waterkeeper works to foster an environmental ethic in young people through our Junior Ambassador program. This program is a year-long, zero-cost, educational program that develops a cohort of high school students into young environmental leaders. Students become community leaders through hands and experiential learning, which challenges their way of thinking of the world through an environmental lens. Our Junior Ambassador program opens students up to issues impacting Biscayne Bay and the surrounding watershed through civic engagement and advocacy training as well as service-learning and field experiences.
As a young environmental leader, Jaïm felt inspired to fix his neighborhood’s environment.
“I feel the Junior Ambassador program inspired me to do this. The original idea came independently, and then within seconds, I began to connect the dots to Junior Ambassadors, especially with the civic engagement and advocacy skills I’ve learned in the program. It all started to click. I really felt strongly about this, and it just felt right, it really did.” - Jaïm Steele.
Please join us in celebrating Jaïm on his innovative community problem-solving! Want to learn more about "Yes Poo, No Poo?" Check out the campaign and order your sticker online HERE. You can also follow along on Instagram HERE.
Interested in getting your favorite high schooler involved in the Junior Ambassador program? Click HERE to learn more! Applications for the '20-'21 school year will open in the next few months!