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DC EcoWomen launched its spring photo contest in April and received more than 30 submissions of high-quality, on-topic photos showing how our great community is advancing environmental efforts in DC and around the world. The photos also showed how our members are learning and growing from environmentally-related experiences and putting their leadership skills to good work.

Our People’s Choice photo contest winner, Maggie Dewane, shared a photo of herself during her travels to Antarctica to see climate change firsthand, where unseasonably calm weather was a stark reminder to the realness of a changing planet. We sat down with Maggie to hear firsthand about the winning shot and the inspiration behind it.

DC EcoWomen: Take us back to the time this photo was shot. What was the experience like being there?

Maggie: Of all the days spent in Antarctica, the day this photo was taken was particularly meaningful to me. I had just seen four Adelie penguins—a penguin species that is an indicator of climate change. We were on Petermann Island, historically documented as a nesting ground for Adelies. These penguins thrive in the most frigid and freezing temperatures of Antarctica, but as summers are getting warmer and winters are getting shorter, they are having to move further south down the continent, which means there’s less habitat for them to colonize. So this sighting was novel and exciting, as it is one of the northernmost settlements they live in. Additionally, the majestic backdrops surrounding us were breathtaking and humbling. “We’re actually here!” I and my friend, the photographer of this image, kept saying to one another. We were seeing one of the last untouched wildernesses, in its raw beauty. Though the bright and beaming sun, and those nearby penguins, served as reminder to the reach of anthropogenic-caused climate change, even this incredibly far removed from civilization.

DC EcoWomen: We love opportunities that help EcoWomen members learn and grow. Did this experience help you grow and learn anything about yourself or about the environment?   

Maggie: Absolutely. I traveled to Antarctica because I wanted to be able to play a more active role in climate change conversations. I believe climate change is the greatest threat to our world today, having rippling effects into national security, human health, economic development, environmental justice, and beyond. Being in Antarctica, learning from world class scientists and explorers, who after years of travel to and from this wilderness could attest to changing trends in weather patterns and wildlife behavior, seeing this place firsthand, gave me a unique perspective that I’ve been able to bring home with me. For example, I wouldn’t have the opportunity to tell EcoWomen’s readers about the plight of the Adelie penguin had I not gone on this expedition! The trip also connected me with many passionate conservationists from all walks of life and various professions. To me, this is how change happens: people working together toward progress. We shared ideas, created goals, and went home feeling invigorated to spread messages of conservation and sustainability. For example, the concept of climate change is so unwieldy to so many of us, it can feel like we as individuals cannot have an impact on the broader picture. But if so many of us make small changes, then that can turn into something really huge! For example, think about things you do that require energy or fossil fuel use: can you limit or remove those actions? Take small steps and we’ll be on our way!

DC EcoWomen: What words of wisdom do you have for future photo contest winners to try to snap a winning shot?

Maggie: Be in the moment and don’t actively think about trying to take a great photo. If you’re loving the moment you’re in, reflect on it and enjoy. I was fortunate to be with someone who was always snapping candids, so when she saw me basking in the natural beauty around me, she took the shot! Genuine emotions make for better photos in my opinion.

“In the Midst of Climate Change” by Maggie Dewane

Maggie Dewane is the Press and Communications Officer to the Environmental Investigation Agency. She previously worked for the White House Council on Environmental Quality and the United States Senate. She has a bachelors from Seton Hall University and a masters from Columbia University. Her hobbies include painting, writing, traveling, soccer, and camping and hiking with her dog Argos. 

 

posted by | Comments Off on Thank You for Marching with Us

Editor’s Note: a post-march message from our president, KC Stover

Thank you for joining us for the Women’s March on Washington. We are so proud of our community and the many opportunities that we have to engage one another. For me, it was incredibly humbling and inspiring to be in the presence of so many passionate supporters of women’s rights.

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As we move forward, DC EcoWomen will be focusing on intersectional conversations to broaden our perspectives and engage with diverse groups in the DC area. This is crucial to supporting civil rights, female empowerment and the fight for a healthy planet.

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First, please join the conversation with us on social media – on Twitter at @dcecowomen, Facebook, and instagram – and attend our events. We also want suggestions for events and ways to help augment our community’s voice in the coming weeks and months. Please reach out to us directly at dc@ecowomen.org.

Second, make your own voice heard. Engage on the issues that you are passionate about. The Women’s March 10 in 100 days is a great place to start. We will be participating in the People’s Climate March on April 29th and would love to have you join us.

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EcoWomen is a non-partisan organization. We do not endorse specific political campaigns or candidates. However, we are pro-woman and pro-planet. Our mission is to give our community great tools, support and opportunities to connect with each other.

We look forward to hearing your voice.

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KC Stover
President, DC EcoWomen

posted by | Comments Off on March With Us on January 21

WMW

EcoWomen is a proud supporter and official partner of the Women’s March on Washington, which will take place on Saturday, January 21, 2017. We are marching with our diverse membership to underscore our unwavering support for women’s rights in our country. All are welcome, so please bring friends, partners, and family. We would love to see you there!

SIGN UP TO MARCH WITH US!

If you are unable to join us, please connect with us on social media. Show us your march signs by tagging us @EcoWomenOrg or @dcecowomen, connect with us on instagram and the Women’s March hashtag #whyimarch. We are thrilled to amplify our community’s hard work and enthusiasm. If you have any questions, please contact us at dc@ecowomen.org.

Please visit the page on the EcoWomen national website for any updates:
ecowomen.org/womensmarch2017

EcoWomen is a non-partisan organization. We do not endorse specific political campaigns or candidates. In marching with us, please keep this in mind when creating and sharing your signs and connecting with us on social media.

LOGISTICS:

EcoWomen will meet at 9:00 am on Saturday, January 21st in front of Teaism at the corner of 8th and D St. NW. At 9:15am, we will walk to the march starting location at Independence Ave and 3rd Street SW. We will wear green (all shades!), and our leaders will carry EcoWomen signs. We will all march behind the national EcoWomen banner. Participants are not permitted to have wooden sign handles for the march.

Please allow ample time for transit as it is reasonable to expect significant delays the morning of the March. It is not recommended (and may not be possible) to drive to the area, so please refer to the link below for street closure information.

Make signs with us!

Teaism has generously provided space for our community to make signs at their Penn Quarter location (8th and E St. NW) on the evenings of January 18th and 19th starting at 6:00pm. Feel free to come by, order dinner, and get creative. We request that participants marching with EcoWomen follow our non-partisan requirements and DO NOT use glitter in Teaism’s space.

RESOURCES:

Here is a working document of events related to the Women’s March on Washington that will be occurring here in DC. Please note: EcoWomen is not affiliated with these events and is providing these links for informational purposes for our membership.

For road closures, refer to the 2017 Presidential Inaugural Subcommittee Joint Transportation Plan.

Frequently Asked Questions: The Women’s March on Washington

THE FOLLOWING ITEMS ARE NOT PERMITTED:

  • Aerosols
  • Ammunition
  • Animals other than helper/guide dogs
  • Backpacks
  • Bags exceeding size restrictions (8?x6?x4?)
  • Bicycles (restricted in the rally and march areas)
  • Balloons
  • Coolers
  • Explosives
  • Firearms
  • Glass or thermal containers
  • Laser pointers
  • Mace / Pepper spray
  • Packages
  • Structures (tents, chairs other than wheelchairs or mobility supports, etc.)
  • Wooden supports for signs and placards
  • Weapons of any kind
  • Any other items determined to be potential safety hazards

We can’t wait to see you there!

posted by | Comments Off on Reasons We Love DC EcoWomen

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Since our founding in 2004, DC EcoWomen has grown from what was once an informal gathering of like-minded women into a full-fledged nonprofit reaching nearly 5,000 members and running 40 programs each year — all with the goal of supporting and empowering women to become leaders in the professional environmental space.

Our organization is run entirely by our board members — women with “regular” day jobs at other environmental nonprofits, consulting firms, businesses, government agencies, and other organizations — who volunteer their time in the extra corners of their evenings, weekends, late-nights, and early-mornings to organize EcoHours, schedule out newsletters, put on workshops, host networking events, and keep the trains running on time with the nuts and bolts that make up this organization and its great community.

With the new year approaching and inspiring a time to reflect, we asked our board members to tell us why it is they dedicate their spare time and energy to our mission, and what it is they love about DC EcoWomen. Here’s what they said:


“It is a community of multitooled women coming together for inspiration, education and connection. Women work together here to make women in environment a force for good. And as a woman in the environment I know that this community would not exist for us if it was not built, staffed, and maintained by us, and I don’t take that for granted. DC EcoWomen feeds my curiosity, buoys my hard days with solid examples of women of every age, and experience and background and who are on the same path, as mentors, speakers and real life leaders who work in government, in newsrooms, in community and in the streets. I don’t know of any other organization that brings us all together. So, long story short I love EcoWomen, because it reflects the best intentions of community and looks and feels like a place for me.” – Tamara Toles O’Laughlin

“It lives up to its superlatives. It is a group of energetic women whose focus is to give others the best tools that they can to go out and do good in the world. It is an amplifier of awesome that draws its energy from its amazing community.” – KC Stover

“I love EcoWomen because it’s such a positive and supportive community of environmentally-minded women. I have learned so much through the professional development team’s workshops and EcoHour speakers, and I have met more seriously cool DC women than I thought was possible, including some lifelong friends. I even found housing through the listserv! The DC EcoWomen really helped me adjust to living in DC and I want to make sure that other women who come after me have the opportunity to be served by this wonderful community as well.” – Claire Garvin

“I get to be surrounded by passionate women who are lifting each other up as leaders in the DC environmental community. To know that every woman involved in DC EcoWomen is doing so in her spare time is inspiring, and I’m proud to be involved in such a positive organization.” – Jackie Marks


Remember, we can’t do any of this without you. As a volunteer-run non-profit organization, we hope you’ll consider giving to DC EcoWomen to help us continue our programming and services to you and other DC-area women. Only four days left before Sunday, January 1 to support our tax-deductible End-of-Year-Giving campaign.

Help us to do more for you, with you. Give to something you love. Give to DC EcoWomen today:

givetosomethingyoulove