Stress over the environment turns into something positive

Ashley Vecchio starts ecolovetoday.org to reach as many people as possible with a crucial message


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Photos



  • Ashley Vecchio (Photo by Anya Tikka)




  • A screen grab of ecolove.org



By Anya Tikka

— A Milford teenager who became concerned about the lack of recycling bins at a fast food restaurant was moved her to take action.

Instead of complaining or just stewing about it, 19-year-old Ashley Vecchio created ecolovetoday.org — a whole new website dedicated to building awareness of environmental issues. It includes the opportunity to take a Planet Pledge and to buy ecologically made T-shirts, with one quarter of the profits to go to an environmental cause of the buyer’s choosing. At the moment, endangered species are the options, but expansion to other ecological issues will come later, Ashley said.

“In almost all fast food restaurants, their containers and bags are either paper or plastic — yet you'll hardly ever see recycling bins.” Recycling is one of the easiest ways to contribute, she said.

The idea to start her own organization started brewing right there and then. But it didn’t come to fruition until about a month ago until September.

The professional-looking website was designed solely by Ashley using Wix. She admits it took a long time and was hard work. All the while she was attending Bucknell University in Lewisburg, where she is, not surprisingly, studying Managing for Sustainability with Environmental Studies and Sociology minors. Bucknell is the only college in Pennsylvania that offers a sustainable management degree.

Ashley graduated from Delaware Valley in 2016. She's eyeing a career “in a managerial authority so I can make sustainable change happen.”

Ashley has always been interested in environmental protection.

“It’s just me," she said about growing up in her family. "I’ve always been stressed about environment. When I was 11 I became a vegetarian. The reason is, I have animals.”

She currently has a dog that she says is her best friend.

She attributes the growing number of her website's visitors to her school friends.

“I have lots of friends in a similar field, but no one is helping me," she said. "This is my way to jump-start making a difference in the word.”

Ashley said her main focus is trying to reach as many people as she can.

Among the ways to get involved, ecolovetoday.org lists:

Make the Planet Pledge then follow an honor code to keep it

Buy T-shirts

Sign up for a monthly newsletter

All the T-shirts are made in USA and screen printed locally. The packaging confirms to strict environmental standards: the tissue paper the T-shirts are wrapped in is recycled, and even the plastic in some of the packaging is recycled. They are also fully recyclable again.

The mission statement on ecolovetoday.org states: “All aspects of this mission involve educating people, improving the environment, and/or raising money for animals or people in need.”

“I have lots of friends in a similar field, but no one is helping me. This is my way to jump-start making a difference in the word.”
Ashley Vecchio


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