As life is action and passion, it is required of a man that he should share the passion and action of his time, at the peril of being not to have lived. Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Shawn Seipler has an inspirational story.

A couple of years ago, Shawn was looking for new business opportunities in the “red-hot” green business sector.   Little did he know that he would find himself on the CBS evening news (click here to watch), presenting his non-profit success story Clean the World just after incubating the idea.

Not only did Shawn experience quick success with a fantastic non-profit, but as he began to see change in people’s lives, he also developed a much deeper green conscious.

As I spoke with Shawn last week, he told me how starting Clean the World had changed his outlook on life.  Before Clean the World, Shawn had a great job as a VP at Channel Intelligence where (like many of us) he did not put much thought into the Green movement or his carbon footprint.  In a burst of entrepreneurial spirit born of long evenings in hotels, Shawn decided to leave the company to set-up Clean the World, a non-profit that recycles slightly used soap items from hotels and then distributes them to the needy in the US and other countries–like Haiti.

Shawn used action to ignite his passion for “green”.  Action so often drives passion…instead of sitting back and yearning to be greener, thinner, smarter, better, sometimes we should take Shawn’s example and just move when we have a good idea that makes economic sense and helps people.

Recycling partially used soap and then distributing it to the needy is a great idea.  We all go to hotels for business/pleasure and we use the packaged soap probably only a couple of times while in the room.  The unused bar normally gets thrown into the bin by the cleaning staff, eventually winding up in landfills.  When you consider that there are 4.6 million hotel rooms in the US, you can imagine just how much unused soap gets tossed each day.  And, when you consider the amount of people (3.5 million) that still die every year from simple diseases like diarrhea because they don’t have the cash to buy soap…you can see how Shawn’s effort is sorely needed.

Seeing lives directly impacted by his work has motivated Shawn and his team to push across the country and sign up every hotel possible to the program.  So, the next time you stay in a hotel, ask them if they are using Clean the World–put a little pressure on the staff.  And, stop by the website to drop a donation if you can.  Finally, check out Shawn’s blog for the latest Clean the World updates.

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