For a non-governmental organization that promotes environmental justice, having an eco-friendly work space is a prerequisite. For Dar Si Hmad, going green translates to many different practices. Among these, replacing single-use items tops the list.
As Dar Si Hmad frequently hosts groups of students and researchers in its work space as part of the Ethnographic Field School (EFS) and the Language and Research Center (CELAR), our organization makes sure to equip its kitchen with reusable utensils. These reduce the amount of waste produced in the office, and also promote litter-less lunches among the staff.
Since staff know that they will always find all the necessary kitchen utensils they need during their lunch break, they do not order food from nearby restaurants or cafes, where their coffee would be served in plastic cup, for example. In addition, the organic waste from food and drink in the office becomes compost that we use to fertilize the land of the pedagogical farm Dar Si Hmad is revitalizing in Boutmezguida.
Dar Si Hmad also applies this green mentality in the office by going paper-free. Spills can only be found in the kitchen, since it is the only area where staff are allowed to eat, and Dar Si Hmad opts for micro-fiber cloths to clean, as they can be reused multiple times, a decision that is both more ecological and more affordable.
Dar Si Hmad also reduces paper waste by supplying the workplace with multiple white boards. These erasable boards minimize the use of paper during brainstorming sessions, especially since staff hold many meetings to develop project ideas and create program content. Once the work is done, the essential notes are transferred to computer software.
Another way our office reduces paper use is our printing policy. At Dar Si Hmad, printing is only allowed for external communications, namely administrative communications. Besides this, if any activity within the organization requires hard copies, we make sure to print on both sides and even print on old, used papers that still have a blank side.
In a world where the climate is heavily impacted by every day practices, Dar Si Hmad believes that by adjusting their small habits within the organization’s office, they are contributing in a small way to the global movement.