The Toyota Green Initiative recently made it’s second visit to the city of Birmingham during the annual Magic City Classic. Celebrating five years of partnership with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), the Toyota Green Initiative (TGI) was launched by Toyota in 2009. The environmental stewardship platform works to educate HBCU students, alumni, and surrounding communities on the benefits of sustainable living.
TGI also aims to inspire and spark conversations beyond college campuses through partnerships and community service. This year, while in Birmingham, the Toyota Green Initiative joined efforts with local partners Alabama Power, the City of Birmingham and the Birmingham Business Alliance to help make the Magic City Classic a greener sporting event. They presented a series of signature events geared toward educating and empowering Birmingham and surrounding communities.
The events included a twist on the City of Birmingham’s annual Electronics Recycling Day, which was hosted by the city’s Keep Birmingham Beautiful Commission and took place on Thursday, October 23rd at Linn Park. This year, State Farm Magic City Classic fans were able to get an early start on the weekend ‘rivalry’ by dropping off recyclables in the name of their favorite team, either Alabama A&M or Alabama State. A high turnout lead to a tie in which both teams earned “green” bragging rights at this year’s Classic.
The series of events also included participation from nationally syndicated radio host and MTV personality Sway Calloway, who joined the Birmingham Business Alliance Talent Recruitment Project . Calloway attended a lunch with college students interested in learning more about various career paths, including green jobs. TGI also led a Day of Service activities at Restoration Academy in Fairfield, AL where students and volunteers worked to install energy efficient light bulbs, build water conservation landscapes and participated in a community recycling drive.
“Our commitment to environmental progress extends throughout HBCU campuses” said Jim Colon, VP of African-American Business Strategy for Toyota Motor Sales, Inc. “Recently, 16 of 22 partner schools, were recognized for adopting sustainable practices, from campus recycling programs to LEED Certification. We are proud to provide resources that help further their sustainability practices.”
As part of the fifth anniversary celebration, Toyota will conclude the delivery of leased Prius lift backs to 22 select Southwest Athletic Conference and Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association schools.
The TGI coalition, a collection of celebrities and environmental experts who speak on relevant ways to go green, participate in panel discussions and host workshops at TGI sponsored HBCU sports events in Birmingham, AL, Charlotte, NC, and Houston, TX. Coalition members include actor Lance Gross, environmental advocates Earthseed, SMB Essentials CEO Lake Louise, green blogger Yoli Ouiya, environmentalist and former NFL player Will Witherspoon, and student ambassador and TGI Campus Contest Winner Stephen Graddick.
For more information, see, Toyota Green Initiative Continues Sustainability Outreach Efforts at HBCU Campuses.