Target Inner Circle | Media Day + 50th Anniversary Party

As you may already know, I am a member of the Target Inner Circle. Last week I traveled to New York City for Target’s Media Day and 50th Anniversary Party. I have been home from NYC for a little over a week now, and I am still trying to process everything that I learned. Last night, I spent a couple of hours talking with a close friend and she wanted to know more about my partnership with Target – this was a great way to really discuss how a green lifestyle blogger fits into the Target equation and I wanted to share with you too!

Target Inner Circle Members

There was a lot of information shared during Media Day, the parts most relevant to you (and me) were Target’s commitment to environmental sustainability, education, community, and healthy living. There are many areas within these topics for example, Target’s commitment to resource conversation including; sustainable packaging, sustainable seafood, and efficient operations and transportation. However, for this post I am focusing on takeaways from the Media Day that I participated in. I will definitely be going into further detail regarding Target’s commitment to sustainability once I visit Target Headquarters later this fall and through other upcoming activities that I will be participating in via my partnership with Target.

Here is a breakdown of what I learned:

In 1962, Target opened their first store in Roseville, Minnesota – and with it came their commitment to health and sustainability in the community. Target’s giving strategy started with their devotion to urban renewal and cleaning local waterways. In the 1970’s they sponsored the first Earth Day celebration and implemented their first recycling program. Today, they continue this commitment by integrating sustainable practices across their business with a focus on using resources responsibly and maintaining the health of our communities.

Target is a retail leader in smart development – using innovative practices to enhance communities, neighborhoods and surrounding areas, they take the necessary steps to protect and preserve water resources and the surrounding habitats on and near their properties using conservation easements. My favorite part is when Target comes into a community, they seek out buildings that were previously used for another purpose, and will rework that existing building into a Target store. A fantastic example is the CityTarget store in downtown Chicago – it is housed in the historic Louis Sullivan-designed building that was formerly home to the flagship Carson Pirie Scott department store.

I was also very excited to hear about the first five CityTarget stores that were opened in 2012. CityTarget stores are small-format (smaller footprint) urban stores in Seattle, Chicago, Los Angeles and San Francisco. This is definitely an area that I will be asking more questions about in the future. I was also interested to hear that Target will be reducing their operating waste by 15% at the end of 2015.

You can already find a good assortment of sustainable beauty, cleaning products and grocery items at your local Target. I was excited to hear that Target’s commitment to healthy living can and will be seen in their new expansion in the fresh food market (coming to a Target near you!)  I was also excited to hear about Target’s continuing partnership with Natural Organics (my favorite affordable organic cosmetic collection!) My hopes are that Target will continue to offer more and more sustainable, organic and eco-friendly items in the future. I will be sharing some of my sustainable Target finds in an upcoming post – stay tuned.

To begin, Since 1946, Target has donated 5% of its profit to the communities it serves which is equivalent to $4 million dollars each week! Target’s commitment to education begins in the classroom where they are an abundance of support and educational programs to set children up for a bright future. Target is on track to give $1 billion for education by 2015 with a focus on ensuring that children can read proficiently by the third grade. Since studies show that third grade is a turning point where kids transition from learning to read to reading to learn. As part of their commitment to education Target has completed 32 School Library Makeovers in 2012 – a total of 118 library makeovers since 1997 – donating millions of book, iPads, computers and smart boards. My favorite parts being that Target also provides an in-school food pantry and gives each child 7 books for their home library. Through their Take Charge of Education program Target has donated more than $324 million dollars to date, impacting more than 90% of the U.S. K-12 schools – donating millions of books, iPads, computers, and smart boards.

What questions do you have about Target’s sustainably, community, education, and healthy living initiatives? I would love to hear and utilize them in my upcoming trip to Target headquarters.

P.S. When I came home from my trip and was talking to Mr. Sweet Greens and Eben about what I learned and saw – Eben wasn’t impressed to hear about the celebrities I mingled with at Target’s 50th Anniversary Party, the mini Broadway Target inspired show we saw or even the huge Wow! factor when Alicia Keys sang Happy Birthday to Target – (you can see more photos on Twitter). However, when I pulled out the picture of me and Bullseye – the Target Dog everything changed, he said “Wow, Mom! While me and Dad were home all week, you were hanging out with the actual Target Dog – I am so jealous!” Ha!

I am a member of the Target Inner Circle, all opinions are my own.

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