After writing my earlier blog post about Be My Eyes and the amazing work they are doing for the visually impaired, I set a challenge for myself. I was determined to find other companies that are using technology to do good in the World. I didn’t have to search long, in fact I just needed to check my inbox. A recent BC Update highlighted BC Dining, and there it was. The Fill it Forward app. Boston College has joined the Fill It Forward Community.
Fill it Forward’s Mission is to Inspire the world to reuse. In their own words “ We create interactive technologies, global giving initiatives and reusable products that inspire the world to reuse.” Can technology save the world?… Maybe
Fill it, Scan it, Give it. Whether you purchase a Fill It Forward reusable product like a water bottle with the very catchy name of Cupanion Bottle or bag or you already have these products and you purchase a Reuse tracker you can participate in Fill it Forward’s mission.
So what happens when you scan your tracker with the app? Every time you scan your Reuse Tracker on the Fill It Forward app, Fill It Forward contributes to charitable projects around the world. Additionally, With the Fill it Forward app, you can track waste diverted, emissions saved, and how much ocean pollution you have prevented. Furthermore, you can track your beverage consumption for the day and set reminders to hydrate. Additionally, you can join communities and track your collective impact and earn badges when you hit different milestones.
So, I know you are wondering did she actually sign up to Fill It Forward? Well the answer is yes. I already have a reusable water bottle so I purchased a sticker for $4.95. My first thought after purchasing the tracker was, isn’t it kind of silly to purchase something that is going to have to be shipped via the mail? That can’t be so great for the environment… I then wonder what will Fill It Forward do with my drinking habits data? Does anyone actually care how many times I fill up my water bottle? I settled on NO!
I just received the tracker in the mail and placed it on my waterbottle and after remembering my Apple password, I downloaded the corresponding app. I even allowed the app to send me notifications, something I don’t normally do, because I do believe that this is an important piece of the puzzle.
I am curious if this will truly change my behavior.
Will I forget my reusable water bottle at home less now that I am a Fill it Forward user? Will I remember to scan the tracker each time I fill my water bottle up? I am not sure! Technology can certainly change our behaviors. For example, who here wakes up and immediately checks their phone? But will I be willing to take these extra steps? I guess time will tell.
In fact, Fill it Forward hopes to enhance its technology. “Our new reminder function will have an immediate impact as customers can easily set time or geo-based reminders so that they never forget their reusable bags again. We’re really excited about the geo-based reminder feature, which pings shoppers with a notification as they arrive at their favorite retailers.” Founder and CEO Matt Wittek. Now we are talking about the creepy/cool tech stuff. Well one may appreciate the reminder, do they really want to be tracked every time they go to Target? I am sure businesses will want access to this information too. In fact, businesses can get involved and reward customers and employees who get involved in programs and competitions. Not surprising some pretty tech savvy companies have already Filled it Forward like Twitter and Salesforce.
Apparently some smart people and large companies like Walmart, Target and CVS Health thought Fill It Forward was a good idea as the company was one of nine winners of the Beyond The Bag Challenge. “Launched by the Consortium to Reinvent the Retail Bag, this initiative aims to reinvent the single-use plastic retail bag, with the goal of identifying, testing and implementing viable design solutions and models that more sustainably serve the purpose of the current retail bag.”
I want to know what you think. Have you ever heard of Fill It Forward? It’s okay, I don’t expect too many people to read the daily BC Updates… Now that you have, would you Fill It Forward? Perhaps this might help encourage you:
From the most recent Fill It Forward Impact Report – 2020
- Over 150 clean water projects have been funded.
- 4,930,820+ Single-Use Items Diverted
- 18,125.34 lbs Plastic Saved – This metric calculates how much plastic pollution we have prevented from entering the world’s oceans.
- 2,359,964.92 kWh Power Save- This metric determines the power consumed each time a single-use cup or bottle is created.
- 186,180.68 lbs Waste Save- This metric measures how much single-use waste you’re diverting from the landfill.
- 2,081,251.85 lbs Emissions Saved- This metric captures the amount of emissions released each time a single-use item is produced.
- 14,211,653.45 sq ft Land Used- This metric measures the land used (logging, manufacturing, and distributing) to make one single-use cup.