We're Back for Season Two!
Updated: Nov 9, 2020
Hello and welcome back to The Sustainable Brown Girl Podcast. This show exists to connect black, brown and indigenous women who are interested in sustainability. Our goal is to inspire, encourage and educate each other. From gardening to thrifting to minimalism to veganism, and everywhere in between, we're all on a journey to taking care of our bodies and our planet. I'm your host, Ariel Green.
But first, let’s talk about what’s in store for season two. Of course, we’ll continue featuring women of color who are making waves in their own way within the sustainability industry. Just a quick name drop - this season we’re chatting with Jasmine, the founder of Black Girls with Gardens, as well as Ariel Maldonado, the founder of the Instagram page GoGreenSaveGreen, and Anamarie Shreeves, one of the first black zero-wasters. Last season I also really enjoyed talking to sustainable business owners, so we’re going to have a couple of dedicated episodes in which we feature two or three women of color who own sustainable businesses. Towards the end of last season, I started doing video interviews, so we’re going to be keeping up with that trend, so if you’re listening to the audio only, be sure to check out our YouTube channel to be able to see the live interview. You can find us at Sustainable Brown Girl on YouTube.
Last thing before we look back at some of the gems from last season, please be sure to leave a review on Apple podcasts - it really helps out the show. I’m going to read one of the reviews that was posted because it made my heart sing.
This one is from BusyBeeWithThree, titled A Must Listen!
Ariel is relatable and practical!! She offers great tips and ideas and I love how she’s trying to influence positive change. She’s not preachy, she’s just raising awareness of sustainable concepts!!
Thanks so much for the review, it really means a lot.
So last season we talked with several sustainable brown girls who dropped some great gems. In the first episode, the guest was my very own cousin, Autumne Stuart, who is a senior packaging engineer at a top consumer company. We talked about conscious consumerism and the circular economy. As far as packaging is concerned, we learned that most of the top brands just aren’t there yet. Many companies are still researching ways in which they can improve packaging by looking at different materials, they know it’s a problem and are working to fix it, but at the end of the day, we have a long way to go.
One thing she did share is that writing to companies to express your concerns about their supply chain actually works. She said that she’s worked on projects where they’ve gotten 10 calls about a specific issue and the company made changes just from those 10 calls. So that’s really encouraging to know that our voices are heard sometimes.
In the next episode, we talked with Sadie Daffer from The Mixed Up Minimalist. We talked about her journey with minimalism and zero waste. On her blog and instagram, she shares a lot of info about making zero waste swaps to reduce your environmental impact. A little update on Sadie - she recently moved to Germany for her job, so I expect that she’ll be documenting her journey with minimalism and zero waste while living abroad.
In our interview with Tyler Chanel of Thrifts & Tangles, we talked about thrifting and ethical fashion. I think a lot of people in the black and brown communities can relate to having gone to thrift stores before “poppin tags” was made mainstream within the past few years. Shopping secondhand is a great way to reduce your impact because you’re creating less demand for new products, specific clothing. The fast fashion industry is a major waste producer and also typically have questionable ethics when it comes to how they treat and pay their workers. Tyler is also a fashion model, so we talked about how she got started in the modeling industry and shifted to working with ethical brands.
Then we (virtually) traveled all the way to South Korea to chat with Kychele Boone, the founder of a zero waste shop located in Seoul. Kychele is an American born black woman who moved to South Korea over 15 years ago to teach English. Since then, she started her own zero waste shop. It was really interesting to hear how Koreans have responded to zero waste and veganism. Apparently they love chicken more than black people do, so it’s been slow going, but the trend is starting to gain traction.
Ever since the black lives matter movement gained more recognition after the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, the importance of supporting black businesses has also come to the forefront. In one episode I interviewed Dr. Kristian Henderson, the founder of Black & Green, a marketplace for all natural products by black creators. We talked about how harmful so many home and beauty products are, and why natural products tend to cost more. It’s important to invest your money into products that are going to impact your health in a positive way, and also into communities that can benefit from it.
Sticking with the topic of beauty products, in the next episode we chatted with eco-influencer Jhanneu, who is also the founder of Low Waste Beauty, a blog about sustainable beauty. We discussed some of her favorite low waste beauty products, and she even offered a few tips to people who are wanting to become an influencer in the sustainability space. Bottom line: don’t be afraid to charge what you’re worth.
The next featured sustainable brown girl was Lauren Ritchie, a Bahamas native, and student at Columbia University studying Sustainable Development and Political Science. We talked a lot about the perception of climate change and sustainability from people living in The Bahamas. With her platform, The Eco Gal, she wants to educate young people on sustainability issues and how it intersects with black and indigenious issues.
One of my favorite episodes from season one was with Raya Salter, an energy and climate justice lawyer, where we further discussed the intersection between climate and racial justice. Raya really drove home the fact that climate justice cannot exist without racial or social justice. We also talked a bit about what the state of New York is doing in terms of environmental policies. If you don't listen to any other episode from season one, I highly urge you to listen to this one.
In the following episode, I chatted with Ashley Renne, a sustainable travel and green living blogger. Even though we were, and still are, in the midst of travel restrictions, we talked a lot about how to travel sustainably. At this point, traveling locally is pretty much the only option for many of us, and fortunately, that’s a great way to also reduce your impact while traveling. Ashley is also well-versed in green technology and smart home devices. These days, rather than traveling, Ashley is preparing for her first child to make their arrival, so I’m sure she’ll be sharing more tips about her journey with raising a baby sustainably.
In the final episode of season one of the sustainable brown girl podcast, I had a chat with SaVonne Anderson, the founder of Aya Paper Co, a sustainable stationary brand. It was really interesting to learn about SaVonne’s experience with starting a business and her process with ensuring that it’s as sustainable as possible. Her shop has amazing designs for pretty much any occasion, and with the holidays coming up, it’s definitely going to be a place that I’ll be patronizing for some holiday cards.
So that was a quick recap on the first season of the Sustainable Brown Girl podcast. I hope you’re looking forward to season two as much as I am, because it’s going to be just as good as season one. Be sure to subscribe to the podcast on your favorite platform, and check us out on YouTube. Also, share it if you loved it and leave a review on Apple Podcast, and maybe your review will be featured in an upcoming episode. You can find us on Instagram @sustainablebrowngirl and check out our Facebook community, we would love to have you there. Until next time, let's continue to make healthy choices for the health of our planet and the health of our bodies. Thanks for listening.