EARTH CARE TEAM
What does it mean to be an Earth Care Congregation?
This is a group of members at OPC who have a passion for celebrating God’s grace and glory in creation and recognize God’s call to cherish, protect and restore this earth. We operate as an extension of the Missions Team. We are answering the PC(USA) “Call to Restore the Creation”. We (and OPC Session) affirm the PC(USA) Earth Care Pledge to integrate environmental practices and thinking into all facets of its church life.
Adopt-A-Highway: The Earth Care Team continues to organize OPC's Adopt-A-Highway litter pickups along the roadside of the 1.2 mile stretch of IL Route 25 between US-34 and Boulder Hill Pass. Four times per year (in February, May, August, and November) volunteers pick up litter to keep the roadsides clean for this stretch of Route 25. We pick up trash, get to know each other and may even find something interesting. This is a good "community service" activiity for adults and youth (e.g. confirmands) as individuals or as groups (e.g. Scout troop) to answer God's call to us to take repsponsibility for the stewardship of our environment.
Fox River Cleanup: We also support The Conservation Foundation's Fox River Cleanup in August each year. In this event, volunteers walk the river edge (in boots) picking up litter from Violet Park down to Hudson's Crossing Park in Oswego.
Monarch Waystation: The Earth Care Team, with the help of Scout Troop 31, developed our Monarch Waystation garden near the manse. This beautiful all-native perennial garden has indeed attracted many Monarch Butterflies as well as other pollinators. It adds a marvelous natural dimension to our church's property. We also adopted the butterfly garden near the church's backdoor, transitioning this garden into an all-native pollinator garden.
Styrofoam® Collection/Holiday Light Recycling: Food service and packaging foam with the PS6 recycle is collected, as well as holiday lights and extension cords. The goal is to continue with our collections twice per year, usually the first Saturday in January and the second Saturday in July.
Plastic Bottle Caps
We have also been collecting plastic lids and medicine bottles (not allowed in normal plastic recycling). These "small plastics" are recycled into plastic park benches.