In 2007, Annie Leonard released her groundbreaking online documentary, The Story of Stuff, which unleashed a torrent of pent-up demand for honest conversation about our consumption-crazed culture. In the eight years since the release of that first film, she and her team have produced an additional nine award-winning animated movies, garnering more than 50 million online views around the world and encouraged viewers to support hundreds of environmental projects and campaigns with their time, energy, and money.
All of their work is covered by a Creative Commons License to encourage sharing. The license means that you can share and screen the movies as much as you want as long as you’re giving credit to the Story of Stuff Project, not changing or editing the content of the film, and not making money off of it. You can register your screening (even if you’re not sure about the details) here.
The Story of Stuff’s podcast, “The Good Stuff”, features interviews with changemakers, entrepreneurs, scientists, and folks just like you who are growing Solutions in their communities. And their blog offers their latest take on what’s happening in the world of Stuff – what’s good, and what’s not so good.
Additionally, they offer a diverse set of teaching tools, including high school curriculum, a faith-based program for Jewish teens and one for Christian teens, a Baha‘i-inspired program for youth, and a lesson for 3rd or 4th year high school-level French classes.
If you’re looking for ways to help, the organization has a number of campaigns and ideas, including taking the “Plastic Free Challenge”, sharing a picture or story of how you’re simplifying the holidays, and signing the petition to get Nestle to prove that they have the right to pump water from the San Bernadino National Forest- they currently pump up to 162 million gallons out every year. They also offer a course to help us all become the most effective changemakers we can be. Named The Citizen Muscle Boot Camp, it is a series of videos, interactive online exercises, and additional tips to help us build the skills we need to make changes in our own communities. To participate in a Boot Camp, all you need is an internet connection, about an hour or two a week, and desire to make the world a better place.
So, take a look, watch a movie, sign a petition, and get involved!
all images, copyright The Story of Stuff