In the 48 days between Earth Day and World Oceans Day, the National Aquarium asked the world to give back to the planet with the ’48 Days of Blue’ challenge.
Every day for 48 days, the National Aquarium has posted a challenge on its website ranging from hosting a lights-out dinner to skipping plastic straws in daily smoothies.
The challenge began on Friday, April 22 and wrapped up on Wednesday, June 8. Nabila Chami, social media manager at the National Aquarium, says this is the third year the aquarium has put out this campaign and each year it has been different.
“Since we are a conservation and education organization, we celebrate both Earth Day and World Oceans Day. Earth Day turns into more of a green movement and since we’re an ocean conservation organization we wanted to leverage that day and talk about how our Earth is made up of about 70 percent of water.”
One of the major themes of this program is that environmental issues and conservation can have a significant impact. Chami says each day, the aquarium tries to give its participants data so they have more of a handle on how the program is helping. Participants can feel hopeful, which is what sets ’48 Days of Blue’ apart from other conservation efforts.
The organization puts this challenge out to the public every year and encourages its own staff to participate. Since the National Aquarium’s conservation team members spend most of their time with restoration work and cleanup, they were happy to join. The National Aquarium used social media to share this challenge and received help from partners like Oceana, National Wildlife Federation and Conservation International.
“We love getting our community and visitors involved but this is something that spans the region,” Chami says. “We’ve seen really great engagement. We even have people participating internationally from Europe and Australia.”
Chami says it’s all about stepping out of your comfort zone and that is what the National Aquarium accomplished over the last 48 days.
“People are really accepting it, there are challenges that are new, like food waste, which is hard to grasp,” Chami says. “Those types of challenges have been really eye opening to folks and we are really excited to show them the results.”
Chami says the organization hopes to continue this type of program in the future and connect people 365 days a year.
To learn more about the campaign, visit 48daysofblue.com.