FedEx helps CTW get off the ground

Transporting soap is pretty easy. Right?

After all – it’s light, compact and easy to pack.

Well, I guess that’s true if we wanted to carry a hundred bars to a different part of the world. I could fit that much in a carry-on. Each bar weighs around 4 ounces, so that would be about 25 pounds. OK … so what about a thousand bars? Well, it might be a bit more challenging, but 250 pounds of soap could fit into three or four good-sized suitcases.

But what do you do when you want to move a million bars of soap into Haiti, The Philippines or Sri Lanka? Now we’re talking about 250,000 pounds. That’s 125 tons! To put it in perspective, that is equal to the amount of chicken fingers and grilled-cheese sandwiches my kids eat in a year!

Hmmm, I might need to do some more calculations and put together a few spreadsheets before I can verify that number. But I think you get my drift.

With 125 tons of soap I can’t just walk up to the airline counter at check-in and tell them I have a few extra bags. This is serious freight, folks.

Enter our new friend and angel Lisa Daniel from FedEx. Lisa is arranging for us to receive the “gift of shipping” for some major airlifts of soap into parts of the world that desperately need it. First up is our “Million Bars of Soap for Hope” delivery into Cap Haitien, Haiti, and more distribution trips are in the pipeline.

Lisa also introduced us to some of her colleagues at FedEx who are working on a program to help with the transportation of soap from our partner hotels to our recycling plant in Orlando.

This simple little idea of saving lives with partially used bars of hotel soap actually has a lot of moving parts. But little by little the pieces of the puzzle are starting to fit. And it gets even easier when you find great partners like FedEx!

Miss Teen Earth and CTW: A match made in heaven

Obviously we are passionate about saving lives with soap. But we get even more stoked when we can share our story with others and see them develop the same enthusiasm. And that’s how it played out after we met Jolie Schamber back in May when she and her family stepped into our booth at Orlando’s Earth Day celebration at Lake Eola Park.

It turned out that Jolie held the title of Miss Teen Earth Florida. The 19-year-old University of Central Florida student was preparing for the national competition in Las Vegas, and was trying to find a cause to support as part of her personal platform. It was a match made in heaven. And from that day on, Jolie became a passionate supporter of Clean the World.

Jolie visited our shop to get some first-hand experience with the recycling process, and she promoted Clean the World at speaking engagements. One of those opportunities was at a vacation Bible school at the First Congregational Church in Winter Park, Fla., where Jolie explained the cause to kids who hopefully will do their part to make the world a better place as they grow up.

We’re proud to say that Jolie went on to win the title of Miss Teen United States in Las Vegas on July 22.

Although she will pursue her degree in Political Science and Legal Studies at UCF, Jolie will spend the next year educating people about her causes as Miss Teen Earth United States. “I feel so honored and grateful to be able to hold this title,” said Jolie. “I cannot wait to promote my causes this year and continue working as an advocate for environmental awareness and protection. I plan on also promoting Clean the World, as it is my personal platform and a cause that I am deeply passionate about.”

So once again this week, we feel like we are making great progress with Clean the World. At every turn, we see another sign that we are doing the right thing and that we are riding a huge wave of support. And we sure are glad Jolie decided to catch the wave.

Until next time – peace … love … and clean hands 🙂

Miss Teen Earth Winner Jolie Schamber promotes Clean the World

I just received a call from Shawn with an update on Jolie Schamber in her quest to be crowned the national Miss Teen Earth. I am ecstatic to report that out of a field of 60 contestants, Jolie has WON the pageant event and has officially been crowned Miss Teen Earth USA. As you all know, Jolie has been heavily involved in promoting our cause everywhere she goes and has adopted Clean the World as her official platform in representing the environmental cause she believes in and promotes. We are all very proud at Clean the World to be represented by such a talented young woman.

Paul Till
Managing Director
Clean the World, Inc.

Now THAT is a lot of soap

Do you have any idea how much space would be taken up by 5 million bars of soap? How many trucks would be needed to move it? How much warehouse space it would occupy?

Neither did I — until I started doing the math on the number of boxes that would be involved, the size of the boxes, etc.

It turns out you’re looking at somewhere in the neighborhood of 20 semi trailers. That’s 80,000 cubic feet of storage. And that is a LOT of life-saving product, my friends!

The story of why I’m even thinking about transporting and storing 5 million bars is a little complicated, and I really can’t go into it right now. Yeah, I know … I’m a tease.

What can I say? I want you to keep coming back for more info 🙂

But seriously, there are many new partners climbing on board the CTW train, and a lot of good stuff is happening. Before we left Cap Haitien, Haiti, last week, one of the pastors requested that we come back in August with 150,000 bars. Well … how can you say no to a request like that when you see such a great need?

That is a 7x increase over what we brought in the first shipment, so we are cranking up the CTW machine and getting ready to fulfill that request.

As always — we can use your financial support, and we would love to talk to anyone you know in the hospitality or transportation industries. If they can give us soap or help us move it from Point A to Point B, then we want to meet them.

You can donate here.

Central Care Mission getting the job done

Our list of contributing hotel and resort partners continues to grow every day. Once we collect soap from the hotels, the next step is to turn around the product and get it into (and onto) the hands of the people who need it. So after defining the protocol of our sterilization, recycling and packaging process, we needed to put in place a scalable operations team that could handle the influx of raw material from our hotel partners. But in addition to the required operational expertise, we wanted to find a partner who gives back and tries to effect positive change in the community. That’s exactly what we found with Central Care Mission in Orlando, and we are fortunate to have them as our operational partner. You’ll learn more about this great organization in upcoming blogs and newsletters.

The Central Care team uses a variety of tools and machines to recycle and package our soap, many of which had to be adapted to suit our particular needs. That’s why we feel fortunate to have a relationship with the wonderful Susan Ryhanen, owner of Creekside Soaps ( Susan donated four custom-made molds, which are an invaluable part of our production process.

Follow us on Twitter @CTWF

Swine Flu tips

For tips and info on swine flu click here.

400 Pounds of Shampoo Donated to Homeless Students in Central Florida

Today CTWF gave approximately 400 pounds of donated shampoo to the Central Florida Hospitality and Lodging Association’s (CFHLA) drive to provide homeless students in Central Florida with every day supplies. Items being collected included essentials such as soap, deodorant, combs, shaving cream, toothpaste and band-aids.

According to CFHLA Cares, the charitable arm of CFHLA, there are nearly 3,000 transient students attending classes in Orange and Osceola Counties, some of whom live in temporary housing conditions such as motels and vehicles.

It was an incredible experience to pull up to the Buena Vista Palace Hotel parking lot full of CFHLA volunteers taking donations out of people’s cars and loading them into a large van. Along with a donation table full of donated items on display, there were two school busses packed with donated items from across both counties. To make the event even more memorable, everyone donating was greeted by the upbeat tunes of the Osceola High School Marching Band.

CTWF hopes to donate even more soap and shampoo to the CFHLA Cares collection drive in November.

Recycling breakthrough produces smoother bar soap

A recycling breakthrough this week allowed the CTWF operations team to produce a smoother bar of recycled soap, similar to bars found at local grocery and drug stores. These more favorable looking bars will allow CTWF to explore donation opportunities within retail channels both domestically and abroad.

Here are some tips to consider when rebatching soap. Remember, everyone has their own preferences when it comes to rebatching soap, so be sure to experiment to your liking.

  • Shred the soap before you begin to melt it down by using a grater or food processor.
  • For soap that has aged over two weeks, try soaking the shavings in water overnight by placing in a pan and adding enough water to coat the shavings, then cover.
  • For harder soaps, instead of soaking shavings in water, try milk or coconut milk to soften it more.
  • The moister (softer) the base soap, the easier the rebatch will be.
  • Be very patient while melting because if you heat the soap too hot and fast you can burn the soap without fully melting it.
  • Try to not to stir too much or too vigorously as this can make too many bubbles and cause pockets.
  • The final complete meltdown should look like a gel but is still pourable to a degree.
  • When the soap smooths out you can stir in any essential oils, fragrances, oatmeal, etc. that you desire.
  • Use a hand mixer to blend the soap before pouring into a mold.
  • Pour into a mold as soon as it gels because if you wait too long it might foam and bring about air bubbles.
  • Let it set up a couple of days, pop it from the molds and let it age a week or two.
Have fun! I’m sure you’ll discover, as we have, that rebatching soap is a rewarding endeavor. Feel free to post your soap rebatching comments, success stories and failures on our blog. We hope to hear from you.

    1,000 pounds of soap donated by Orlando hotels

    Clean the World Foundation has now collected over 1,000 pounds of donated soap and shampoo from Orlando area hotels.

    Our hotel partners include Fairfield Inn by Marriott, Hampton Inn, Hilton Garden Inn, Holiday Inn Select, La Quinta Inn & Suites, Marriott Hotel and Residence Inn by Marriott.

    We’d like to thank these partners for their donated soap and shampoo as we embark on a mission to save lives by recycling and distributing it to local homeless shelters and impoverished countries worldwide. These “early-adopters” are making a difference in people’s lives and we congratulate them on their commitment to our recycling efforts.

    Please visit their fine establishments whenever you’re visiting Orlando.