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Meet Your Customer Service Rep: LaMark Brown

LaMark (right) with volunteers at Clean the World’s Orlando operations center.

You might have spoken with them already, but for those who haven’t had the chance to meet the wonderful individuals who make up Clean the World’s stellar Customer Service team, here’s your chance! We are spotlighting a team member each month to help you get to know the face on the opposite end of the phone (or computer).

LaMark Brown is an account manager at Clean the World. He is relatively new to our organization, having just started in September, but has proved to be a perfect fit.

Before working full time at Clean the World, LaMark was well acquainted with our organization. In 2014, he moved to Orlando to play football with the Orlando Predators, a professional team in the Arena Football League. The Predators always supported Clean the World’s mission, and that relationship eventually led LaMark to his current occupation.

LaMark is originally from St. Louis, where he developed a passion for football early in life. “Outside of Clean the World, I am a movie nerd, a video game nerd, [I like] sports, weather, I touch a lot of different areas,” LeMark said. “But the main thing for me is football. I’ve played it since I was 6. It’s been 21 years.”

Lessons for Life

Coaching the fundamental skills of football is one of LaMark’s favorite aspects of the sport. He believes this translates into his everyday life, and that understanding what you’re doing and why you’re doing it helps you become successful in any field.

LeMark believes learning a variety of skills makes a person more disciplined. “I feel like in any job or profession if you can master your skills at that craft, you become a better overall person, whether it’s in a sport or job,” he said.

His work ethic shows in his commitment to Clean the World. Just recently, our staff came together and responded to the need for soap in Haiti after Hurricane Matthew ravaged the southern coast of the island. Clean the World employees met with local Orlando volunteers early in the morning at our recycling center to help box soap, although it was just hours before that same hurricane was predicted to come through Central Florida.

LaMark wasted no time making sure every volunteer table was stocked full of soap ready to be packaged. He engaged with volunteers and was excited to assist them in any way possible. He helped keep the positive energy flowing through our warehouse, even amid a natural disaster.

“Everyone that works here actually cares about what we’re doing. It’s something we’re passionate about, being able to provide these things to the people that don’t have them. We can go and get soap whenever we need it, but in other places where they can’t — soap is not something they see on a regular basis,” said LaMark.

Shipping Tips

In LaMark’s day-to-day work at Clean the World, he’s constantly in contact with our hospitality partners. He makes sure each general manager or director of housekeeping understands how meaningful it is that they’re participating in our life-saving program while ensuring they have all the necessary tools to make the program as easy as possible.

When asked if he has any tips for hospitality partners, LaMark said he hopes hotels will actively send us their bins immediately as they become full. Partners often set aside bins that are 100 percent full rather than sending them off to one of our recycling centers. Holding onto those bins can affect a hotel’s impact statement, which reports all the bars of soap that property is contributing to our cause, as well as all the waste they’re helping to divert from landfills.

Simply put: If you let full bins pile up at your hotel for a few months, then we won’t have any numbers to report back to you at the end of the quarter.

On the other hand, sending bins that aren’t full is not cost-effective. The best thing to do is contact Customer Service as soon as your bin is 75 percent full. That way we can send shipping labels and send replacement bins to your hotel. However, even after you receive the shipping labels, we ask that you please don’t ship containers to us until they are full to the top.

LaMark says that by following these steps on a regular basis, Clean the World can provide an accurate quarterly report of the amazing impact your property is making!

Next time you speak with LaMark or exchange a friendly email, please feel free to share what you love about Clean the World or any concerns you may have, because he’s just the guy to help you out!

Orlando Volunteer Center Benefits From Scout Spirit

Justin Sontag

Earlier this summer, Justin Sontag of Boy Scout Troop 678 organized a project to lend Clean the World’s Orlando volunteer center a helping hand. Justin and his fellow scouts formulated a plan to bring comfort to our volunteers, which resulted in a dozen scouts assembling 63 stools for the downtown Orlando facility.

This idea to donate seating came to Justin a couple of years ago after a two-hour volunteer shift at Clean the World with his mother.

“I noticed that volunteers stood while sorting and organizing cleaning products,” Justin said. “I realized that if volunteers had a place to sit, they would be comfortable.”

When Justin had the opportunity to plan an Eagle Scout service project, he knew which organization he wanted to help out. Justin enjoyed his time spent volunteering at Clean the World, and the mission to save lives with soap and hygiene products resonated with him.

Justin told Clean the World, “I pitched the idea to my troop at a meeting and got the project approved by the direct representative for scouting. To gather funds, I wrote letters to my friends and family asking for assistance.”

This was a special donation for Clean the World and a memorable day for the employees who met Justin and his mother as they delivered the stools to our warehouse. Since the donation, volunteers have been overwhelmingly pleased with the new option to sit while sorting soap and bottled amenities. Each month nearly a thousand volunteers come through our warehouse. Our local, national, and global impact would not be possible without the help of our many volunteers. So improvements to the volunteer center are always appreciated and extremely beneficial.

Since he was 7 years old, Justin has been a shining example of the Scout OrlO. He proved his desire to help others and better the community through his service with Clean the World. Our organization works closely with the Boy Scout and Girl Scout Troops of Central Florida, and we greatly appreciate their loyalty to our life-saving mission at Clean the World as well as the Orlando community.

Las Vegas Residents With Intellectual Disabilities Learn Job Skills

Opportunity Village graduation ceremony.

Opportunity Village is a wonderful organization that provides opportunities for people who have intellectual disabilities. It provides a service for these individuals to gain job skills and experience they might otherwise not have the chance to learn. Clean the World Las Vegas is proud to partner with Opportunity Village and the men and women who serve our life-saving mission on a regular basis.

The young adults of Opportunity Village visit our Las Vegas warehouse to help sort bottled amenities. Clean the World Hygiene Kits rely heavily on recycled bottled amenities from hotel partners, and having several helping hands on a daily basis gives us the ability to increase our impact through repurposed hygiene amenities.

This is Clean the World’s third year as an Opportunity Village partner. The program runs like a regular school year, August through June, Monday through Friday. While working in the Clean the World warehouse, Opportunity Village participants learn a variety of skills throughout the workday.

“We teach them the responsibility of having a full-time job. Getting up early every morning, being on time every day, being accountable for the quality of their work, following directions, and how to behave in a professional environment,” says Kevin Williams, Clean the World Las Vegas Recycling Operations Center Manager.

The Clean the World and Opportunity Village partnership is instrumental in giving these young adults independence and allows them to contribute to a meaningful cause. During the program, Clean the World employees work alongside Opportunity Village participants, helping them improve their communication and patience. As a result, towards the end of the program around graduation time, there’s a visible rise in confidence and self-reliance among the workers.

Kevin spends time with the group every day throughout the program. “I can say that nothing I’ve done professionally to this point in my life makes me happier or prouder than the work we do with these kids. All they want is to be treated like adults and respected as such. A simple ‘great job today’ can make their whole week.”

The end of the year graduation ceremony is always a bittersweet experience. Clean the World employees enjoy working alongside these extraordinary individuals and love celebrating their achievements. As Opportunity Village students learn from our organization, our team also learns from them. We are so grateful for the partnership and their hard work. Clean the World looks forward to strengthening this relationship for years to come.

Hotel Room Attendants Have a Personal Connection to the Hygiene Mission

Claudia speaking to room attendants at the Orlando Marriott World Center.
Claudia speaking to room attendants at the Orlando Marriott World Center.

Clean the World often takes the time to visit hotels participating in our recycling program. It is a way to share the mission and empower the room attendants to make a difference in the world in a personal way. Attendants are on the forefront of the Global Hygiene Revolution. They are the ones who take the first step in diverting waste from landfills, the first step to providing someone with life-saving hygiene products. Clean the World’s Donya McSwain and Oscar Gonzalez recently visited Orlando Marriott World Center to inspire the staff. The day held inspiration and motivation for us all.

Donya and Oscar shared the message of how thousands of needless childhood deaths can be prevented with access to soap. They talked about the importance of each housekeeper, and the responsibility they hold in helping these children. Our team spoke to the group in both English and Spanish.

“The message seems to reach their heart in their native language,” Donya said.

On this visit, Donya and Oscar brought along Pastor Julio Brutus, a pioneer for the Clean the World’s mission. Pastor Brutus is the man who made it possible for our planes to land in parts of Haiti that were in dire need after Clean the World launched in 2009. He is a crucial member of the Clean the World family, helping reach thousands of children in Haiti throughout the years.

As the head pastor of the Evangelical Church of Haiti, he interacts with 100,000 members. More one million bars of soap have been distributed in Haiti through Pastor Brutus’ efforts alone.

Pastor Brutus delivered the message of Clean the World to the hotel employees in Haitian Creole, the native language of many staff members. He brought a guest, a young lady named Claudia. “As she was speaking in Haitian Creole, you could hear her stress, the importance of the housekeeping staff saving the soap so others can prosper,” Donya said.

Claudia runs a Medical Clinic in Haiti. She is on the front lines of illness, seeing the struggle every day. “Her message was so moving, she connected with the housekeeping staff, I didn’t know that I would be moved to tears from the response we received,” Donya said.

Housekeepers chimed in on the struggles their families and friends face at home in Haiti. One housekeeper stated that all the people she knows in her country are in need of the soap we provide.

Everything at Clean the World is about how we can positively affect the world around us. Our individual decisions and the actions we take here in our own nation, our own state, our own community have a global impact. Through our actions we can save lives with soap.

Language unites us, but even more important is our belief in helping others, the goal to create happier, healthier lives through our daily actions.

Since 2009, Orlando Marriott World Center has been able to contribute more than 16,000 pounds of discarded soap, allowing us to create 85,995 new bars of recycled soap. What an amazing accomplishment.

There are so many ways you can help your community and the world. To find out how you or your organization can make a difference through Clean the World, please contact us today.

Hygiene in Schools Program Helps Students Adopt Healthy Habits

Clean the World’s Oscar Gonzalez teaches proper hand washing techniques.

Clean the World is revolutionizing the way children learn health education in schools. Under the direction of Cairra Martin, our Global Health Coordinator, we are piloting the “Hygiene in Schools” program at two public schools in Orange County, Florida: Eccleston Elementary and Memorial Middle School.

The elementary years are a key time for hygiene education to ensure students build healthy habits while middle school is a pivotal time for children to learn hygiene as they are maturing.

Once a month, Clean the World staff members participate in this community giveback. They join students and parents for three hours after school, the period when some children are waiting for parents who are still at work.

“We are establishing a fun and interactive environment where we can educate the students and families on the correct amount of time needed to wash their hands properly while providing them with the hygiene amenities to follow through with their lesson at home,” Cairra says. “Each participant uses our CTW black light box to learn how germs travel and how proper hand washing is the best way to get your hand clean. We give each child a glowing solution for their hands, a visual representation of the true amount of germs on their hands.”

Under the black light, they can see where germs build up in nails, on the palm and in between the fingers.

“Once each participant is thoroughly grossed out by the germs, they then properly wash their hands for a full twenty seconds.” The kids come back to the black light box to check that they have no “glowing germs” on their hands. Often startled to see glowing, missed areas between their fingers, they rush back to the sink to vanquish the remaining “germs.” This experiment not only teaches the important of the length of time to wash one’s hands but also the importance of thoroughly scrubbing with soap.

The program includes interactive games teaching about germs, as well as fun activity sheets to take home. Cairra and the team are proud to say each household that engages with our program truly enjoys the experience and shows us that Clean the World is moving in the right direction to becoming the leader in hygiene education and awareness.

It is so important to grow the program right here in our home base of Orlando, where nearly one-fifth of all homeless public-school students across the state now live in Orange, Osceola or Seminole counties.

Nationally, an estimated 22 million school days are lost annually because of colds alone. According to the Centers for Disease Control, hand washing is the most simple and efficient way to combat these preventable illnesses. By providing this hygiene education, often not covered in the school curriculum, Clean the World bolsters children’s health to keep them confident and in the classroom.

Providing soap and hygiene education for continued childhood success and growth are a primary focus for Clean the World. With the success of our pilot program in Orlando, we are making plans to roll out Hygiene in Schools to communities throughout Florida and the United States. If you are interesting in funding hygiene education in schools, please visit cleantheworld.org/donate.

Partner Profile: Vision Hospitality Group

vision-hospitality-groupAll properties under the umbrella of Vision Hospitality Group work to further the life-saving mission of Clean the World by recycling soap and hygiene amenities. Vision Hospitality places great emphasis on sustainability efforts, providing a great example to the hospitality industry as a whole. With 38 properties (and counting) recycling soap for Clean the World’s Hospitality Recycling Program, Vision’s recycled materials have resulted in the distribution of over 3,600 bars of soap.

In more ways than one, Vision Hospitality Group aims to preserve the future of our environment for generations to come through sustainability efforts at each and every Vision hotel. Not only do Vision’s properties apply Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) measures to all rooms, but its Hampton Inn & Suites Chattanooga/Downtown was the first Silver LEED Certified Hotel in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Vision Hospitality Group does consistently implements new recycling and conservation programs into its business model to aid in reducing the carbon footprint made by the hospitality industry.

Next to sustainability, community service is engrained in the company culture of Vision Hospitality Group. Each Vision property aims to serve and make a positive impact on the surrounding local community. Vision’s staff actively participates in volunteering with local non-profits and charities. By giving back and showing gratitude to the community, they help to create a bright, hospitable future.

Vision’s partnership with Clean the World helps to eradicate the hygiene-related illnesses that result in approximately 6,000 deaths a day among children less than 5 years of age. Every guest who stays at one of these properties is assured quality service and will find comfort in knowing every discarded bar of soap and bottled amenity will help someone in need of hygiene essentials stay healthy, rather than adding to waste in landfills. This partnership saves lives locally and globally while setting a high standard for hospitality sustainability. The company’s motto, “One Team. One Vision” can attest to Vision Hospitality Group’s exemplary work and dedication to making the world a better place, one hotel at a time.

Welcome Our Largest Hilton Partner Property


“We are so pleased that a local act as easy
as repurposing our partially used soap
can have a positive global impact!”
– Jo Licata, Community Projects Manager
Hilton San Francisco Union Square

Join Clean the World in welcoming our largest Hilton Worldwide partner property, Hilton San Francisco Union Square.

Why is this so amazing? Hilton San Francisco Union Square is one of the largest Hilton properties in the world. With one of the largest room counts for a Hilton property, this contribution means Clean the World will collect more soap than ever for recycling!

As a company, Hilton fully supports sustainability and implements real-world solutions with real impact. Hilton has contributed to the creation of about 800,000 bars of soap, diverting over 116 tons of waste from entering landfills. This contribution means hundreds of thousands of children have received life-saving soap thanks to Hilton.

Hilton knows it is important not just to create a sustainability plan to better the environment, but also to do greater good in lives worldwide. Through the Clean the World mission of global hygiene, Hilton has its hand in saving lives around the world. According to the World Health Organization hand washing is the simplest and most effective way to prevent illness and disease. Bottom line, soap is vital for healthy living. By providing access to soap and hygiene education, Clean the World helps reduce the mortality rate among children across the globe, in more than 100 countries.

We are pleased to have Hilton as a key partner and are proud to call them a leader in sustainable practices. From Hilton San Francisco Union Square to Hilton Paris Opera Hotel, the hundreds of Hilton properties partnering with Clean the World are passionate about recycling soap and saving lives, a commitment evident in the company’s impact numbers and continued support.

Recycling for a Cause in Canada: Fairmont Hotels & Resorts

As a Canadian-based operator of luxury hotels and resorts, Fairmont Hotels and Resorts operates properties in 19 countries including the United States. With the Clean the World program in place at locations from California to New York, even Hawaii, Fairmont Hotels and Resorts has been a key participant in the Global Hygiene Revolution. The Fairmont partnership is paramount to Clean the World.

Fairmont has always been loyal and passionate about its mission to protect the environment and assist those who are struggling. When Clean the World extended north in 2015 with a program that would improve the lives of Canadians in need while diverting hotel waste from landfills, Fairmont jumped at the opportunity.

One remarkable example of commitment to the environment is the recycling program at Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise. The Chateau has an extensive recycling program including plastics, metals, beverage containers, all paper products, styrofoam, cigarettes butts, natural corks, glass, porcelain, electronics, light bulbs, batteries, chemical hazardous waste, used cooking oil, wood skids, crayons, tires, toner cartridges, and mattresses. Moreover, Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise is among the first hotels to participate in the Clean the World program in Canada and the only 05 Green Key Hotel in the Banff National Park.

Fairmont’s participation is something to celebrate, as Canada is a significant player in the hotel industry with more than 8,000 hospitality establishments comprising over 440,000 rooms. About 400,000 soap bars end up in Canadian landfills every day, equaling about 150 million bars per year.

In addition to benefitting the environment, Fairmont’s efforts support community and humanitarian organizations throughout the provinces. With nearly 800 food banks in the country and around 3 million Canadians living in poverty, there is a tremendous need for the basic hygiene amenities provided through the Clean the World program. Clean the World reaches a vast amount of the Canadian population through donations to food banks. Up to 23 percent of Canadians use food banks regularly, with a fluctuating homeless population of around 200,000.

Since we launched Clean the World Canada, more than 170 hotels spanning nine provinces have joined the program, with Alberta leading the way. From Fairmont Pacific Rim in Vancouver, to the Fairmont Royal York in Toronto, all the way to the coast of Newfoundland, you can find hotels engaging in sustainable practices that ultimately benefit the people of Canada.

Fairmont Hotels and Resorts leads the way, meeting its corporate social responsibility goals of reducing environmental impact, and creating long-term sustainability and stewardship by strategically integrating the innovative Clean the World program. Fairmont diverts tens of thousands of pound of waste from North American each year.

Partner Profile: Providence Hospitality Partners

providence-hospitality-partnersBased in Colorado, Providence Hospitality Partners is a prestigious management company composed of various beautiful properties with a common goal, “forge a legacy of corporate excellence and social responsibility”. Providence has been recognized by Forbes Magazine for its 5-star properties and has a reputation for outstanding service. Clean the World is grateful to have the support of Providence in our mission to save lives with soap. The partnership between Providence Hospitality Partners management group and Clean the World means countless lives saved with recycled soap and bottled hygiene amenities.

Unlike most hotels, Providence offers a unique, historical twist to the guest experience. The company has a program called “1883 Hospitality” which takes guests back in time to the late 1800’s for the duration of their stay on select Providence properties. Employees dress in time-appropriate costumes, also taking into account the historical heritage of the surrounding area and place great emphasis on gracious hospitality, respect and genuine concern for the wellbeing of guests. From the moment customers pull up to the property to the last moments of their stay, guests are lead through a time warp to almost 150 years in the past. Details like this set Providence hotels apart from others and create a memorable experience for those involved.

Providence Hospitality Partners work to create a sustainable future and preserve the environment by actively participating in Clean the World’s Hospitality Program. Room attendants collect all used soaps and bottled amenities after each guest’s stay. These materials are stored in recycling bins provided by Clean the World before being shipped off to one of our recycling facilities. These bars of soap and bottled amenities are continuously being diverted from landfills and going to the people who need these hygiene necessities the most. Providence has contributed to the distribution of over 2,000 bars of soap through its partnership with Clean the World. Every bar of soap promotes a healthier lifestyle and wards off preventable diseases that often result in death for children and families that lack the necessary resources to stay clean and well.

With eclectic offerings and sustainable practices, you can be sure Providence Hospitality properties are at the forefront of guest experience. With each stay, you can know you are doing good in the lives of others around the globe while also preserving our precious ecosystem.

‘He Got Up’ Was a Day of Celebration and Services for the Homeless

Clean the World’s mission has always been to help the less fortunate by providing health and hygiene to those in need in our community and across the world. On Easter Sunday, we fulfilled this mission on the local level by participating in “He Got Up,” a day of celebration and services for homeless individuals, families, and others in need.

Clean the World team members staffing the shower area at He Got Up.
Clean the World team members staffing the shower area at He Got Up.

This event at the Orlando Citrus Bowl stadium was the first of its kind. Homeless people from three Central Florida counties received free transportation to the Citrus Bowl, where the Orlando Serve Foundation took advantage of existing local resources to help people on the path to self-sustainability. They had access to food, various types of aid, and a resource fair that connected the unemployed to job readiness training and employment opportunities.

Clean the World joined forces with Orlando Serve Foundation to provide showers for every attendee. As the sun began to rise, the Clean the World team was ready and at their stations. Portable shower trailers had arrived, equipped with warm water and changing rooms. Each guest received a towel and hygiene amenities. Bathing is a something many of us take for granted. With the lack of proper shelter, the homeless often go without basic hygiene. And with fluctuating weather conditions, it can become difficult for our neighbors in need. Florida has one of the highest homeless populations in the United States. There are 30,000 homeless and “home-insecure” people in Central Florida alone.

He Got Up was an event to inspire and serve this population. As a community, we gathered in good will to share our time and services. The event offered haircuts, clothing, meals, and consultations with doctors, dentists, and optometrists. Legal services and job placement were also available. As a volunteer at the event, I saw the good it was doing. One man leaving the shower area said, “This shower made me feel human again.”

It was beautiful to see the positivity in people who face extreme adversity on a daily basis and to connect to the fact that we must love our neighbors as ourselves. As I sat in the stadium for the He Got Up service, many came with smiles; it was an extraordinary break from the mundane of daily life. The service was a message of hope and care the fulfilled the vision of organizer Tim Johnson. He is the senior pastor at Orlando World Outreach Center and a former defensive lineman in the National Football League, playing for Penn State, the Pittsburg Steelers and the Washington Redskins. Through Pastor Tim’s concept, Clean the World’s mission, and the community coming together, we were able to serve the less fortunate in a meaningful way by providing health, hygiene and confidence to all who visited.

Ball State Students Party Clean-the-World Style During Spring Break

The week of March 7 marked the official beginning of spring break for college students all over the nation, including those who attend Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. In celebration of their spring break, 27 students from the Big Four on-campus student organization traveled to Orlando for some fun at a different type of tourist attraction: Clean the World’s Recycling Operations Center. The Big Four is a student organization that comprises members of four multicultural groups: Asian American Student Association, Latino Student Union, Black Student Association, and Spectrum, an LGBT student association.

As a part of their service project, the four organizations took over our Pittman Street warehouse and sorted bottled hygiene amenities for Clean the World Hygiene Kits. For five consecutive days, the students gave their time to volunteer and understand the importance of hygiene and global health.

Sidney Rice, a graduate student at Ball State and member of the Big Four student organization, planned the service trip. Sidney described a meeting her group held every evening after volunteering at Clean the World. The students referred to these meetings as “reflections,” and they revolved around the takeaways individuals had from their volunteer experience that day. Taking soap and hygiene products for granted was a common theme.

Sidney never realized the severity of hygiene as a global issue until learning about Clean the World. Like many people, she recognized the lack of water and sanitation in developing countries as an issue, but overlooked hygiene as a vital puzzle piece to global health.

Students Ani Thomas and Ishmeal Allensworth also shared their reflections on the volunteer spring break trip.

“You just throw away the bottles of soap after using them once or twice,” said Ishmeal describing the average life of a bottled amenity in the hospitality industry. As he reflected on his experiences at Clean the World, he realized more than ever how “the little things count for people in other countries.”

Sidney, Ani and Ishmeal all spoke of their experiences at Clean the World as an “overall positive experience.” Back in Muncie, unique volunteer opportunities are more difficult to find. The students had worked with local food banks and shelters closer to campus, but said the different atmosphere at Clean the World made for an altogether unique and memorable spring break trip.

While sorting soap, Ishmeal made friends with Tiffany, a Clean the World volunteer from Florida. Tiffany and Ishmeal have remained friends since the Ball State volunteer trip and stay in contact outside of their shared experience.

Ani, a nursing major at Ball State, was moved by her experience and eager to spread awareness about Clean the World’s life-saving mission among her peers and local hotels.

“I didn’t realize how many hotels were involved in this Clean the World organization, and that’s inspiring,” Ani said. “From this point forward, I want to go to hotels and ask them ‘Do you know about Clean the World? Are you involved in this?’ You know, just be an advocate for this organization because it is doing such an amazing thing for people across the country and in third-world countries.”

The Ball State group played trivia games, participated in a lip-sync battle, danced, listened to music, and made new friends all while supporting the Global Hygiene Revolution.

Ani hopes this experience will continue to bring the Big Four groups closer, help them get to know each other better, and offer each group the understanding of a different community within the Ball State Campus.

“I hope we can all become allies for each other,” she said.

Hilton Sets the Bar for CSR in the Hospitality Industry

travel_with_purpose_logoWith more than 4,600 properties and 758,000 rooms, Hilton Worldwide sets a shining example of corporate social responsibility at a high volume in the hospitality industry.

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is an increasingly important characteristic of corporations all over the world. CSR is the way in which companies recognize their social and environmental impact, and develop initiatives that benefit society. At Hilton, efficiency and sustainability are significant parts of the business model. The company continually works to make improvements and gain knowledge from other corporations with successful CSR reputations.

Simple Upgrades = Big Impact

“Intrapreneurs” are Hilton employees who help find creative solutions to challenges in their communities. Recently, Hilton intrapreneurs teamed up with Whole Foods and swapped energy management teams to achieve a fresh perspective on how to better conserve natural resources. Hilton identified a need for hotel room upgrades such as energy-efficient LED lights, door gasket replacements, and a plan to phase out inefficient room appliances. In the hospitality industry, the second or third largest cost for the average hotel is energy. In making these simple upgrades, Hilton maximizes environmental and financial efficiency.

Partnership with Clean the World is another way Hilton places emphasis on social responsibility. Clean the World has more Hilton affiliates than any other hospitality flag. Through that partnership, a substantial number of Hilton’s 140 million annual guests, take part in our sustainable mission to repurpose the soap and hygiene amenities recycled after each stay. Clean the World has recycled and distributed over 31 million bars of soap with a great amount of support and contribution from Hilton Worldwide its intrapreneurial staff.

The entire guest stay has become more sustainable from the start with the room upgrades, to the end with after-stay amenity collection, diverting waste from landfills. These diverted materials get a second life as new bars of soap for people struggling with hygiene-related illness in developing regions around the globe, and to the homeless and other at-risk groups in North America and Europe.

Travel With Purpose

Travelers are catching onto businesses that maintain sustainable methods in their corporate structure. Travel with Purpose is a Hilton Worldwide campaign designed to assure hotel guests that they are supporting an all-around sustainable brand. Through this campaign, Hilton has set three main goals. The first goal was opportunity, which the company offers by investing in youth opportunities. Hilton has since reached over 400,000 young people through internship programs, career engagement, and life-skills training.

Travel with Purpose also set community and environmental goals. In October of 2015, Hilton employees contributed 213,000 volunteer hours in 4,145 different volunteer project for their Month of Service. Their environmental goals led to reductions in energy by 14.5 percent, carbon output by 20.9 percent, waste output by 27.6 percent, and water use by 14.1 percent partly through the Clean the World program.

In celebration of Global Handwashing Day on Oct. 15, 2015, Hilton Paris Opera became the first Clean the World hotel partner in continental Europe. Discarded soap and bottled amenities from Hilton Paris Opera will be recycled to benefit European citizens who are at risk for hygiene-related illnesses.

Hilton is the first hospitality company to achieve the U.S. Department of Energy’s Superior Energy Performance Certification. Its commitment to CSR makes Hilton Worldwide a recognized leader throughout the hospitality industry.

As Hilton grows in its CSR goals, the rest of the hospitality industry begins to follow. When a prestigious brand such as Hilton sets the bar high, other brands have to make changes to keep up. And that’s how the hospitality industry transforms into a more sustainable industry for travel and leisure.

Partner Profile: JHM Hotels

PrintClean the World is proud to have JHM Hotels join us on the forefront of corporate social responsibility and sustainability. As a company, JHM Hotels is eager to impact communities both near and far with its time, talents and resources. JHM has a mission to be a responsible steward of corporate resources, thereby directly impacting communities through philanthropic and volunteer endeavors, which the company accomplishes through the Clean the World recycling program.

With after-stay amenity collection, thousands of pounds of waste are diverted from local landfills. These products are recycled and distributed worldwide to those who are affected by hygiene-related illness, fulfilling JHM’s core company values of community outreach, nurturing and encouraging in a tangible way.

JHM’s motto is “Keeping Our Promises.” The company is doing just that by supporting poverty relief and environmental stewardship through its partnership with Clean the World.

Buy socially conscious, high-quality Marlowe skin care products to support our mission

marloweClean the World is proud to announce our partnership with Marlowe skin care products. Marlowe makes sophisticated skin care products for socially conscious individuals. With each purchase of a Marlowe product at Target stores and Target.com, a portion of the proceeds supports soap distribution and hygiene education for those most susceptible to hygiene-related illnesses.

From a plethora of lotion options, to men-specific skin care, there is something for the whole family. You can feel good about the impact you make with your purchase.

In a market full of options and opportunity, it is a pleasure to discover Marlowe. This unisex skin care line is simplistic and full of nourishing essentials. With extracts of passionflower fruit, green tea, sea algae, and willow bark, these products have the “M Blend” to keep your skin at its best. No need to travel the globe researching the perfect skincare regimen. With Marlowe, it’s spelled out.

Each product is made in the USA, paraben and phthalate-free – and cruelty-free. Earthy blends of bergamot, citrus, sandalwood and musk to water lily, bamboo leaf and teakwood, embody the influences from around the world.

Gentlemen rejoice! The men’s skincare line from Marlowe is the perfect balance of artistic masculinity. To be a Marlowe man means to be an explorer, to try new things, see things differently, and revitalize life. With subtle scents of agarwood, sandalwood, musk, and citrus, discover the perfect products for you. With classic options like shave cream and bar soap, to modern essentials such as facial cleanser and beard oil, you can express yourself with something new in your morning routine.

This boutique line is for those looking for fulfillment and product with purpose. While you are trying to get the perfect perspective in your point and shoot camera, you can be confident in Marlowe’s angle. So treat your self to something luxurious while improving lives around the globe. Check out the Marlowe product line at Target and follow our social media channels for all the updates.

Global Handwashing Day Observed With Live Demonstrations

Global Handwashing Day celebrated its seventh anniversary on Thursday, October 15. Clean the World was thrilled to have the opportunity to promote the cause in both of our US locations: Orlando and Las Vegas.

Founded by Global Public-Private Partnership for Handwashing (PPPHW), Global Handwashing Day is a day of advocacy dedicated to increasing awareness and understanding about the importance of hand washing with soap as an effective and affordable way to prevent diseases. This holiday puts a much-needed spotlight on hygiene and the enormous effect hand washing has on improving global health.

Clean the World's Jacob Michaels demonstrates proper hand washing techniques.
Clean the World’s Jacob Michaels demonstrates proper hand-washing techniques.

Nearly 6,000 children under the age of 5 die every day from hygiene-related illnesses. Hand washing with soap is a “do-it-yourself vaccine” that, when practiced properly and regularly, prevents infections and saves lives. Many people in the public-health sector refer to it as the cheapest way to prevent hygiene-related deaths and stop the spread of harmful bacteria.

Clean the World hosted two events in honor of Global Handwashing Day. The events took place at the Artegon Marketplace in Orlando, a few miles from our home office, and at the Linq Promenade in Las Vegas. Clean the World employees set up informational booths and sinks for hand washing at each location with the help of our sponsor, the American Cleaning Institute. A sink in the middle of a marketplace is an unusual sight, and it it attracted onlookers to learn more about Global Handwashing Day and Clean the World’s mission. Our booths offered a tutorial on how to properly wash hands with soap to maximize cleanliness.

Lilly Dimling, the director of programs for Clean the World, participated in the Orlando Global Handwashing Day event, helping to spread awareness at the Artegon Marketplace. “This year we ‘raised the soap bar’ in our celebration of Global Handwashing Day. We wanted to get out to the public and promote awareness of the importance of hand washing. We got down and dirty, showed people how to wash properly, and quizzed them on when it is most important. I think I can say everyone had a good time, and we have a new group of hand washing ambassadors!”

Throughout the day, dozens of people approached the booth and interacted with Clean the World volunteers. Some had never heard of our organization or knew that October 15 was Global Handwashing Day. The Orlando team also raised money through “Raise a Hand for Hygiene” to support our worldwide hygiene mission. Many people showed interest in future volunteer opportunities at Clean the World’s Recycling Operations Centers in Orlando and Las Vegas.

The main goals for this year’s Global Handwashing Day were to:

  • Foster and support a global and local culture of hand washing with soap
  • Shine a spotlight on the state of hand washing around the world
  • Raise awareness about the benefits of hand washing with soap

This was Clean the World’s first year celebrating Global Handwashing Day with an off-site event that was open to the public. We learned a lot, and will use this experience to produce an even bigger event next year.


Volunteer Team Serves Hundreds in Guadalajara, Mexico

In late September, Clean the World set out on a Global Volunteer Experience trip to Mexico in conjunction with Children International. We spent two days in the city of Guadalajara, teaching proper hygiene education to accompany the 15,000 bars we distributed.

IMG_4024Clean the World and Children International have a partnership to provide children across the globe with consistent, long-term access to soap. “Access is only part of our hygiene solution,” said Lily Dimling, director of programs for Clean the World’s Global Soap & Hygiene Initiative. “Understanding when and how to use the soap turns it into a powerful tool to fight disease and illness, which is why we emphasize hygiene education on our Global Volunteer Experience trips.”

Longtime supporters and patrons Alisa J. Faulk, Kris Vos, and Ann Nelson accompanied the Dimling along with Clean the World’s Veronica Shivers and Paul “Doc” Skomsky. These women work in the hospitality industry, coming from the Hyatt, Marriott and Renaissance companies. They experienced the full lifecycle of the Clean the World program, from the everyday collection at their hotels, to touring and volunteering at our recycling facility, to delivering the recycled soap to children in need.

The whirlwind trip was Clean the World’s first visit to Guadalajara. Our group visited a primary school, a high school, and two Children International community centers, including the Tlaquepaque Community Center. Guadalajara is the second most densely populated area in Mexico. The urban city has areas of dire need where Children International steps in to help.

The Clean the World group received a warm welcome at each location, interacting with 100 to 300 children during every visit. We shared the importance of hand washing in a fun and interactive way. Our Global Volunteer Experience volunteers dressed up as Super Aqua (water) and Super Jabón (soap). They came dashing into the room full of children, showing their strength and power, using teamwork and friendship to fight the “germs,” portrayed by the rest of the Clean the World crew.

IMG_3810We recruited children to stand with us in front of the group to sing “Happy Hand Washing” to the tune of “La Bamba.” Doc managed to find a guitar at every location and strummed the chords of the song, which engaged the children. The song is to remind them how long they should wash their hands. When they are done humming or singing the song, they will have washed their hands twenty seconds. “It was a very special feeling giving the mothers soap,” Doc said. “These mothers manage on such limited resources, and it is important to all of us to keep our families healthy and clean.”

We also brought basins of water to demonstrate proper hand-washing techniques. Children washed their hands while team members provided guidance and let them practice doing it correctly. The children loved getting involved and showing off their new skills in front of the group. Their biggest surprise was looking at how dirty the water was when they finished. They all were very excited about our visit and promised they would take what they learned back home and teach their families about proper hand washing.

It is important for us to instill the fact that hand washing is the simplest way to prevent the spread of disease, infection, and illness so the children can lead healthier lives. However, we gained so much as well. “The children hug you; the moms hug you. It was a truly uplifting experience,” Doc said.

Each Global Volunteer Experience is an opportunity for Clean the World to spread the love. We show children and families that no matter where you are from or how you live, each person’s health and well-being is important. Please join us on an upcoming trip to see how Clean the World’s recycled soap changes lives around the world.

After all, the global hygiene revolution starts with you!

Support Clean the World on Global Handwashing Day

Happy Global Handwashing Day!

Every year, Oct. 15 is set aside as a day to motivate and mobilize people around the world to improve their hand-washing habits. Clean the World is proud to be part of this movement because it aligns with our goal of eliminating hygiene-related deaths through providing bars of recycled of soap and hygiene education to at-risk people. By recycling and distributing discarded hotel soap and bottled amenities, we have contributed to a 30 percent reduction in pre-adolescent deaths from hygiene-related illnesses since 2009.

But we still have a long way to go. That’s why we are asking you to recognize Global Handwashing Day by supporting Clean the World with a donation to help advance our lifesaving work. Your gift will improve the hygiene circumstances for families both here at home and around the world. In fact, 92 percent of the money donated to Clean the World goes directly toward funding the mission.

A recent study showed that 65 percent of hygiene-related deaths are preventable by hand washing with bar soap. At Clean the World, a $25 donation funds the production of 125 new recycled soap bars. This soap, along with proper hygiene education about the value of routine handwashing, will help improve the overall health and well-being of the people who need it most.

Clean the World donate button

Giving Social

We always accept donations through the “Donate” button located in the header of every page on this website. Or in this case, you can just click the button right above this paragraph. However, we just launched a swift and easy online donation system last week. The new social media tool “#Donate” makes donating quick and nearly effortless. Facebook and Twitter users can donate to Clean the World by posting “#Donate,” followed by a dollar amount.

On Facebook, this donation is submitted through a post on the organization’s page or as a comment on a recent post. On Twitter, you Tweet “#Donate + dollar amount” to @CleanTheWorld, and that tweet translates into support for our mission. The “#Donate” tool is becoming very popular among donors who frequent social media platforms such Facebook and Twitter and prefer the convenience of giving back to their charity of choice without navigating away from their newsfeed.

Vacation Day

If your upcoming travel plans steer you in the direction of Orlando or Las Vegas, Clean the World’s Recycling Operations Centers are always in need of volunteers and extra hands to help sort soap. It’s a great way to spend a morning with your family, friends or co-workers and experience the power of our life-saving mission hands-on. Clean the World staff will walk you through the background and history of the organization and share the recycling process that transforms the discarded hotel soap into new recycled bars.

Whether it’s donating, volunteering, or simply sharing Clean the World’s mission with friends, neighbors, and relatives, your support is truly appreciated in every form.

#Donate now @Clean the World

Screen Shot 2015-10-09 at 1.17.39 PMWe are excited to announce our newest social media add-on feature: #Donate.

If you’re hip to social media, you know that’s pronounced “Hashtag Donate.”

This amazing technology from GoodWorld allows users to donate money to their favorite cause simply by commenting “#donate” followed by a dollar amount on a charity’s Facebook page or @ them on Twitter.

Making a quick donation online has never been easier. #Donate redirects first-time users to a new browser tab, where they securely enter their credit card information and confirm the donation amount. Returning #donate users are simply requested to confirm their donation amount. Within 12 hours, the payment is processed, and the non-profit receives their donation after a small service fee deduction.

This technology is a huge benefit to Clean the World, as donations of any size help greatly in the global distribution of our recycled soap bars.

Donations help us further our mission of eliminating environmental waste from the hospitality industry and preventing hygiene-related deaths by supplying soap to at-risk people. Clean the World uses donations to recycle and distribute soap and to provide hygiene education that teaches people how, when, and why to wash their hands.

We launched this new feature on Facebook and Twitter just in time for Global Handwashing Day, which is right around the corner, on Thursday, Oct. 15. Clean the World is a huge supporter of Global Handwashing Day and other hygiene initiatives.

Handwashing education is a crucial piece in tackling preventable hygiene-related diseases in developing regions. By implementing proper handwashing techniques in every household, school, and workplace, we could save more than a half-million lives each year. Therefore, we love spreading awareness through Global Handwashing Day and continuously strive to find ways to make soap readily available to all.

Check out our new tool, tell your friends, and let us know what you think! You can prepare for you first donation by visiting GoodWorld right now and authorizing your Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Changing Lives in Zambia

In late August, a Clean the World team traveled to Zambia on a joint trip with Children International. Clean the World Marketing Coordinator Kristin Rucker documented the trip.

Jamil Rodman, Jennifer Kolb, Pamela Theriault, and Bianca Madrid volunteered to join us on this mission to prevent childhood disease and death through soap distribution and hygiene education. These women are partners of Clean the World, volunteers, donors, and ambassadors that connected one way or another.

They joined us and Children International (CI) to distribute 15,000 bars of soap and teach healthy habits to the people of Zambia. The country has a population of more than 14 million, with 60 percent living below the poverty line. Soap is all too rare in developing areas of Zambia, where choosing necessities often does not include soap.

CI is a vital part of the betterment of these communities. The organization supports health and education needs, providing long-term care for children to increase their success in living a better life.

Sing. Dance. Love.

After a visit to the CI headquarters, we departed for a life-changing day in Kanyama. The facility there opened in 2005 and was CI’s first location in Zambia. We received an overwhelming welcome from 300 children dancing, laughing, and cheering for our arrival. The love was apparent, a great deal of hope resonated in all of us as the children clamored to meet us and ask our names.

zambiaAs all 300 children stood around the central area, our volunteers performed a hygiene education skit featuring Super Soap and Super Water. Jamil came boisterously through the stage as strong and helpful Super Soap. Bianca whirled around as vital Super Water. Jen and Pamela came teetering through, tearing around as bad-guy germs. The children were ecstatic for Super Soap and Super Water to save the day, overtaking the germs with their strong teamwork.

After distributing 500 soap kits to the children at the Kanyama facility, we visited a sponsored family that receives support from CI. They graciously invited us inside their home, which is a two-room, cinderblock dwelling – a rare luxury.

The floor is dirt, doors consist of tattered cloth blowing in the breeze, and the bathroom is a large ditch in the distance. The family was genuine and kind, truly happy to have each other and the support from caring people. One young man was 19 years old and has been in the CI program since he was 7. His testimony bolstered the fact that success happens when non-profits work together as a team.

We were sad to leave the community. The children followed us back to the caravan. At one point, I had 30 children surrounding me. We moved as one multicellular unit, holding hands, each holding onto the next so we would not have to be apart.

Chibolya was our next stop. We experienced the now-familiar greeting of dance and song at this center, which opened in 2007. Children International’s mission is to provide the tools for children to be healthy, educated, and self-reliant, to create lasting change for children in poverty. Clean the World provided soap to reach the goal of health and hygiene for each child.

At this location, the performers invited us to perform with them. They taught us dances, and our attempts amused the group. We played a game where we coated bouncy balls in glitter and played catch with many of the 200 children. We explained how the glitter transferred to our hands and then on to other people just like germs. We shared the importance of soap and showed how to wash our hands properly.

To the tune of “Happy Birthday,” the congregation joined us in singing “Happy Hand Washing.” The lesson is that the length of time it takes to sing the song equals the length of time you should wash your hands: 20 seconds. Children lined up to receive soap. They were joyous and thankful to receive the gift. It was very meaningful to see how they appreciated our visit.

Our final visit was to the town of George. The 300 sponsored children from the village arrived an hour early, and they patiently waited for our arrival. Again the thoughtful greeting of song and dance followed. Mothers told us how our donations of soap are a blessing, how their children do not get ill as often when they can wash their hands.

A volunteer brought stickers, which was an extra treat for the children. Word spread fast outside the facility. Children ran down the road in droves. Within 30 minutes, 100 children gathered for the treats. Some of them ran a half-mile for the chance to receive something fun and colorful. What a fun time it was giving those out and seeing how special it was for the children. We forget how materially blessed we are at home.

Health is Wealth

We made fast friends wherever we went. The true gift for us was the chance to learn and understand a culture beyond our own, to give love and receive it. We experienced the common goal all humans share, living beyond surviving, living in the moment, and sharing the understanding that health is wealth.

Beyond our visits to connect with the people who benefit from Clean the World’s soap, we toured the beautiful countryside. We saw wild animals everywhere, walked to markets, spoke with locals, and learned of daily life to better understand a different lifestyle. We visited the world’s largest waterfall, Victoria Falls, and canoed down the Zambezi River.

What a wonderful world we live in, what a meaningful trip. We all agreed, that it was an experience of a lifetime, We learned more and felt more love than we ever anticipated. Though we reached many children, there are so many more who need help. We saw how continued support makes an impact in these children’s lives. This trip only created more purpose and drive to continue the Clean the world mission of reaching children everywhere, to reduce disease, and promote hygiene habits for a better future. Our lives were touched and forever changed.

I cannot wait to see where Clean the World goes next. I hope you can join us!

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