16-year-old Sarah Kessler from Grand Rapids is part of the Troop 1483 of Girl Scouts of Minnesota and Wisconsin Lakes and Pine Council. She says fast shopping, the idea behind mass-market clothing that’s produced very quickly and often results in a cheaper product, is having a negative impact in our environment.

To raise awareness on the topic, she did research for her Girl Scout Gold Award project. She learned a lot and made a map that identifies which stores provide sustainable shopping and second-hand clothing in northern Minnesota.

Kessler said she was inspired by her love for fashion and was intrigued to learn more about the environmental damage the fashion industry leaves behind.

“I think it’s really important for people to realize that you kind of vote with your money every time you buy something, so you should use your voice to support what you want to see in the world,” said Kessler.

Kessler also made a video explaining how the quality of clothing has gotten so poor. In the video she said if it doesn’t make it to a consignment shop, it ends up getting thrown away and is often found in landfills, polluting the ocean. Her video also talks about worker exploitation and negative working environments.

Kessler said we can all make a difference by shopping more responsibly and recycling with second-hand shops.

Click here to watch the video and learn more.