DARIEN, Conn. -- The Darien Chamber of Commerce celebrated businesses that protect the environment at a Going Green For Biz Mixer.
The event was part of the chamber's annual Going for Green Project, which for the past seven years has encouraged businesses, community organizations and individuals to participate in environmental activities. The yearly event includes having business make a pledge to consider green options, a Going for Green poster contest among Darien High School students, a "Celebrating Trees" photo display hosted by the Tree Conservancy of Darien at the Darien Nature Center, and a townwide cleanup.
The Outstanding Green Business Award was given to the Darien Community Association Thrift Shop for its recycling efforts. The work includes recycling bags and metal hangers, donating clothes and toys to charitable causes such as Toys for Tots and the Rotary Club, and donating bedding to the Paws Animal Shelter in Norwalk.
"I'm just so moved," said Thrift Shop Chair Carol Smith after receiving the award. "This is just a part of what the DCA and the Thrift Shop does. Nothing is wasted."
"We don't do this to be recognized, we do it becomes it comes natural and it's the right thing to do," said Ilana Vosari, Thrift Shop vice-chair.
The Chamber also recognized Peter Saverine with the Unsung Green Hero Award. Saverine was the one who came up with the idea of the Going for Green Project, and wrote the pledge that business owners take.
The poster contest was held for high school students in Dorine Bosler's graphic arts classes. The winning poster was "Monopoly" by Bobby Fitzpatrick, and the second place poster was "See the Change" by Amanda Bieler. All 23 posters can be seen on display in the windows of Frederic and Company.
The event was hosted by TD Bank, which has taken a number of initiatives to go green. These efforts include making many new locations carbon-neutral, encouraging employees to set aside time to plant trees, using recycled products and installing new green ATMs that will save paper and are powered by renewable energy sources.
"We have a very large green initiative. It's very near to our hearts," said Paula Csengo, manager of the TD Bank branch in Darien.
The Going for Green Project will culminate with the townwide cleanup on Saturday, April 26. Groups will meet at 8 a.m. in the parking lot behind CVS and set out to clean up areas of the town.