Sunday, August 20, 2006

Re-envision your 'trash.'

They say one person's trash is another person's treasure, and when you consider what you put into the trash, you'll find that's the truth. We throw away so much that can be reused, refashioned, and recycled; it's a shame to waste so much when there are other alternatives. Here are some ways you can re-envision your 'trash' and reduce your waste:

* Don't waste your newborn's umbilical cord blood. Donate it for use in biomedical research or life-saving medical treatment.

* Don't waste napkins or diapers. Use cloth ones that can be washed an reused over and over again.

* Don't waste your body or organs after death. Donate them for medical treatment or for medical or forensic training.

* Don't waste your hair. When you cut it, donate it it to Locks of Love.

* Don't waste fruit and vegetable peelings and other plant matter. Compost it instead.

* Don't waste the bounty from your garden. Donate it to a local food bank or food rescue organization.

* Don't waste things that can be recycled. They still have life left.

* Don't waste gas. Drive gently.

* Don't waste time. If you ever begin to think you're bored, check out So what can I do for some productive and meaningful ways to spend your time.

"Waste not, want not;" that's how the old saying goes. Words to live by!

"There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered." - Nelson Mandela


Sunny Smith said...

Some great reminders in deed!I recently became familiar with the concept of cord blood and cord blood donation when a friend went through a pregnancy and started to look into having her daughter's donated. Unfortunately, there are no locations in Austin that accept cord blood! I'm not sure if this is due to it being a fairly new practice, lack of interest by the populace, or what. But if more people request this service at their hospitals it will hopefully become more widely available over time. According to the National Morrow Donor Program website, the only location listed in Texas which accepts cord blood donations is one hospital in Houston.

Karama said...

Hi Sunny,

Cord blood can be donated from anywhere in the continental US, though perhaps that wasn't true when your friend gave birth.

From my original cord blood post, as recommended by NMDP: "Contact Cryobanks International if there is no hospital in your area. Donations to Cryobanks are accepted from anywhere in the Continental United States. They'll come and pick it up, and remember donating is free. Cryobanks can be reached at or 1-800-869-8608."

That's who we're using and so far the process is working well. Also, awareness is definitely increasing. I have a paper coming out on the many new cord blood laws in the US that are designed to increase the number of cord blood donations. Look for it in December issue of the American Journal of Bioethics.

Thanks for your continued readership, Sunny. I hope you'll stop by again soon, and, of course, spread the word.

Sunny Smith said...

Thanks for following up with that - I will definitely keep that in mind. While I'm not planning on having children for a while, I will definitely share the information with my friends who are!

Karama said...

My pleasure, Sunny. And thanks for telling your pregnant or soon-to-be pregnant friends.