Iowa Families Log on to Learn Sustainable Living Techniques

By Jill Kasparie, Reporter

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - Technology will bring the latest in environmental education to Iowa families.

An Eco-Family Virtual Conference organized by Iowa State University's Extension Office kicks off Thursday night. Program leaders will meet with families across the state via the internet to teach families new ideas about sustainable living like conserving water and buying local food.

Kids and parents can wear headphones and chime in when they have any questions. The conference aims to help families save money and save the environment.

"This is a way families can pass on values that they have as it relates to being good stewards with our resources," said Program Facilitator Kristi Cooper.

Families can pay to participate in six sessions of the virtual conference, which take place once a month. Participants will watch videos, take part in activities and even create an avatar video. The idea is to bring families closer together, while helping the environment at the same time.

Cooper said the program was designed for people across the state, but the word got out and now families from as far as Florida are signing up.

"We all know climate change is occurring and there are things we, as humans, can be doing and it doesn't take big steps," Cooper said. "They're small steps all of us can be doing that will make a big change in our environment."

Cooper said the program is not about giving up things, but it's about being smarter with what we have.

Some easy ideas to share with the family include turning off the water while brushing your teeth and beginning a composting program at home or in the office.

For more information you visit their site here.
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