8 Ways to Go Green This Halloween

1)    Re-use Costumes
If last year’s costumes no longer fit or you just don’t want to wear them again trade with family or friends. Put together an original outfit with different parts of different costumes or look around for interesting pieces at op-shops and garage sales. Most important of all is to have fun.
The other alternative is to rent a costume and every good costume shop has a great selection of gruesome and scary characters.

2)    Make Your Own Make-Up
Paint your kids' faces with eco-friendly make up, like you’ll find at www.purepoppet.com.au, or make your own. Visit www.safecosmetics.org/article.php?id=233#halloween for more information.

3)    Healthy Treats
With so many preservative-filled lollies it’s better for the trick or treaters to have organic lollipops (www.artisse.com.au) or even fruit. Fruit juice drinks are popular if they’ve been doing some lengthy walking around the neighbourhood.
Alternatively small inexpensive or easy DIY nature gifts like walnut boats or gum nut children are a great way to remind them about the beauty of nature. (www.ecopartybox.com.au/category/party-bags-and-favours)

4)    Decorating The Home
If making some effort to get the home looking spooky buy a pumpkin from the local market. Hollow it out and light it up with beeswax candles. Get the kids to make spiders from the wall using empty toilet rolls and pipe cleaners.
Another spooky effect is to paint scary faces on old used plastic milk bottles and place a candle inside of them.
Save electricity by dimming the lights where possible to keep a spooky feel to the home.

5)    Halloween Parties
If you choose to have a party instead of trick or treating, email or sms your guests their invite. Offer locally-made food like celery and carrot sticks with home-made dips on reusable plates. Party activities can include bobbing for apples, reading scary stories, hide and seek in the dark with a torch or even a treasure hunt for hidden Halloween surprises.

6)    Trick or Treat Bags
A material reusable shopping bag with handles is the best option for the environment. If they’re not around try a pillowcase.

7)    Reverse Trick or Treating
Want to raise awareness of Fair Trade Certified chocolate and help end abusive child labor conditions in the cocoa industry? This year, try "reverse" trick-or-treating (instead of accepting lollies and treats) by handing out Fair Trade chocolate and/or informational cards on why supporting Fair Trade practices in the cocoa industry is a year-round must.

Reverse Trick-or-Treating is an initiative of Global Exchange and is a collaboration between national and regional non-profit organizations advocating for Fair Trade and against child labor in the cocoa industry, such as International Labor Rights Forum
Many organizations and chocolate companies, including numerous ones involved in Reverse Trick-or-Treating have signed the Commitment to Ethical Cocoa Sourcing, calling on the cocoa industry to end abusive child labor in the cocoa fields and pay cocoa farming families a fair price that allows them to meet their basic needs. Visit http://www.globalexchange.org/campaigns/fairtrade/cocoa/reversetrickortreating to learn more.

8)    Compost Your Pumpkin
According to an article on Pumpkin facts (http://urbanext.illinois.edu/pumpkins/facts.cfm) the world produces nearly ½ a billion kilos of pumpkin waste every year. A better alternative to dumping them in the garbage bin, where they will eventually just add to methane emissions in the landfill, is composting them in your own garden compost.  

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