It is said that “big things come in small packages.” Such is the case for an innovative startup launched by four suburban New Jersey Moms: the Back2Tap campaign. These moms-turned-green-activists began the program by educating school children on the benefits of using reusable water bottles. Since then, the campaign has grown; it now funds water-related initiatives in schools both locally and abroad and increases communities’ environmental awareness.
The Back2Tap campaign began in 2007 in Chatham, New Jersey, where the Back2Tap founders – mothers who are also professionals – noticed that plastic water bottle trash was becoming an eyesore at public parks and playgrounds. The moms took action: they established the Back2Tap program in order to educate their children, their kids’ classmates, and their communities about the wastefulness of using disposable water bottles. The moms also sold 1,500 reusable stainless steel water bottles to members of the school community. The campaign was successful: it raised $8,000 for local schools, and two of the schools used the funds to purchase point-of-use water coolers, thereby decreasing their plastic usage. Even in its beginning stages, the Back2Tap program helped to increase students’ and communities’ eco friendliness, encourage participants to use re-usable eating and drinking wear, and allow families to save money.
On the heels of the Back2Tap campaign’s success, the moms extended the campaign by launching a small business. The business coordinates numerous programs intended to spread the word and launch Back2Tap campaigns in schools and non-profits all over the nation. For example, Back2Tap organizes Green Fundraisers (which help schools, businesses, and other groups adopt point-of-use water supply methods), sells educational videos and resources through its website, sells custom-logoed water bottles, and helps businesses become more sustainable. This fall, Back2Tap will help kids enjoy a virtually waste-free lunch: the company will expand its product line to include reusable sandwich wraps and snack pouches. Back2Tap also donates a portion of its profits to provide clean drinking water for schools in Central Asia.
Back2Tap encourages those interested in increasing their communities’ environmentalism at a grass-roots level to participate in one of its programs.