The Giving Bag concept – a campaign designed for hoteliers by two Cornell students – took home first place at the recent student sustainability competition, presented alongside the Sustainability Roundtable at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration (SHA).
The idea is to reduce unnecessary landfill waste and save money for hoteliers by donating guest’s left-behind belongings to charity. When students Lilia Karimi and Quinn Cox learned that the majority of objects left behind were left intentionally, they knew that if provided a special place to do so, travelers would be keen to leave these items for the greater good.
For over 35 years, The Refinishing Touch crew has enjoyed working with staff, students and communities in and around the higher education and hospitality sectors to improve facility aesthetics and sustainability. One of the most uplifting aspects to our job is being witness to environmental commitment and improvement firsthand.
Within each of our primary sectors – higher education, hospitality and government – going green has taken center stage. However, when worlds collide, a whole new world of possibilities is introduced. This collaboration between Cornell and the travel industry opens the door for tomorrow’s brightest minds and today’s most influential business people to collaborate and take action.
Separately, colleges and hotels house countless residents and guests day in and day out, making them two of the most environmentally influential sectors out there. Because of this, it’s important to remember that left-behind products aren’t the only things that can be recycled, re-used and renewed. As furniture assets accrue normal wear and tear, replacements are made. However, establishments can not only lengthen the life of its pieces by choosing to remanufacture, refinish or re-upholster – they will also cut carbon emissions and eradicate harmful landfill waste.