Born from a desire to bring big changes to the world via our ever increasing reliance on technology, Seb Berry created the TODAY App, offering users the chance to take on small sustainable challenges that have big impacts on our planet.
We got the chance to speak with Seb about sustainability, solutions and the big challenges in today’s society.
Q: What inspired you to create the TODAY App?
A: For me, the first thing was to try and figure out how to bring the world’s most monumental challenges into some kind of framework that feels personal and relevant.
We live with one of the most powerful pieces of technology in our pockets, 24hrs a day. Many of us also recognise the need to make change towards sustainable alternatives, and technology can help make it more fun and easy to share.
I saw so much power in the small choices we make as individuals, which play into broader systems and dynamics with environment & climate as much as business & governance – and imagined how we might recognise our own potential in our daily habits.
I’m inspired by the incredible things people are capable of, and brought the TODAY App to life to provide a platform to empower people with the personal difference they can make on many of the biggest issues facing our generation.
Individually and collectively we share many common goals, and we can work toward them by focusing our energy and attention into what we know is important – but we tend to get distracted and forget about those things in our day-to-day lives.
Q: Tell us a little bit more about the app. What’s your favourite feature?
A: TODAY is a sustainable living app that gives people one small challenge that they can make each day. It gives people feedback on the positive impact they’re having. It prompts little habit hacks and changes we can easily make – like going meat free for a day or grabbing a reusable coffee cup.
The vision of the TODAY App is to create a lifestyle tool that motivates us to take up more sustainable habits. You can see daily quotes alongside active challenges, personal impact and collective impact.
My favourite feature for the App right now is ‘Invite Friends’, which allows people to start building teams and a support crew around taking on positive new habits and having the support network to keep up with them.
Q: Do you think we’re becoming more or less sustainable in today’s society? Why?
A: There is much happening that is positive. It’s an interesting and tough question to answer though, as there equally are signs that as a global community the net shift is still heading in the wrong direction.
There’s huge groundswell in awareness and action around sustainability. In media, government and non-government organisations, business, community and then of course ratified commitments to the Sustainable Development Goals in 2015 by 150 world leaders.
As individuals (consumers if you will) we also drive the agenda though – and that’s a critical factor. There is something of a reliance on support structures such as government to provide answers to how we will turn the tide on unsustainable human practices. However, the Catch-22 is that consumer behaviour is the very thing that motivates business and drives policy. Equal pressure is needed from both sides to find balance with the natural world and arrive at a healthy and sustainable future.
As a business owner myself, I would say there is a real change in the air with organisations realigning with deeper values and taking the initiative to shift the goal posts around people and planet as much as profit. In this respect I would highly recommend all organisations to go through the process of B Corporation Certification and involving as many of their teams in that process as possible.
Q: What’s your favourite TODAY challenge? Why?
A: There are so many things we can do, and I’ve only incorporated a small number of the hundreds of habit hacks that I’d like to have in there.
My favourite challenge would also have to be the most impactful. And one of the most significant habits we can get into is reducing the amount of meat in our diets.
What I hope people get out of the App is a sense of:
Personal motivation – consider it a sustainable living buddy.
Connection with friends who also want to make a positive impact, since you can log into the app through Facebook.
Access to products and services that can help to support more sustainable living in the long term.
Q: Tell us your top three tips for sustainable living
- A: Try going VEGAN
- Buy nothing else NEW in 2018
- Move all your services to GREEN
Q: Can we look forward to TODAY for Android in the future?
A: Good question! Further work is going into the App to make it more awesome. First thing’s first, we need to help people form the sustainability habits that they’re going for, and support them with the community, information, products or services they need to maintain them.
While an Android version would be great to make available, we’re looking for resources to be able to make that happen.
To help accelerate TODAY on its journey, we’ve just built a chatbot game for Plastic Free July on Facebook Messenger. The idea here is for us to keep testing and making things better while finding the money to be able to continue App Development.
If it’s not too late, please go to https://m.me/thetodayinitiative and simply click Get Started to get involved in the Plastic Free July game – you’ll get little daily reminders to keep up the good work!