Woman and boy on sidewalk

Our Work

You can’t have healthy people on a sick planet. We put a health frame on all of our work because a healthy environment is critical to human health, and because it makes environmental issues more real for people. Health professionals are opinion leaders in society and can be influential in public policy. As a result, we proactively seek out allies in the health care profession and health care industry.

In everything we do, we operate with like-minded people and organizations in strategic coalitions. Collaboration is the only feasible way to address the scale of the issues we work on, influence powerful vested interests that are resistant to change, and leverage the decentralized make-up of the NGO community. We carry out our programs and campaigns through strong and deeply networked coalitions of organizations, each of whom bring different areas of expertise and relationships to our work. For example, we form coalitions and partnerships with hospitals, medical professionals, health care organizations, and public health agencies and seek model change in the sector to leverage broader change.

Research, creativity, and cutting-edge communications support all of our work, but the following strategies form the unique foundation of the Ecology Center’s approach:

  • Market transformation. Thirty-seven of the world’s one hundred largest economies are corporations. That’s why direct corporate engagement is critical. 

  • Policy and legislative action. Bad public policy has created major environmental and health problems. Progressive large-scale public policy is very difficult right now, making it important to stay involved at every possible level. We maintain a presence in relevant public policy arenas in order to be in a position to advance or protect our goals. 

  • Education & Generational Transformation. Environmental literacy is critical to making transformative change. Through investment in our K-12 programming, students understand systems change and environmental impacts, providing them the skills they need to be engaged citizens.

  • Place-Based Work. We lead and engage in programs in Southeast Michigan because we’re based here and because we believe that organizing grounded in the real concerns and real issues of communities and families is the most powerful and transformative. People are more motivated to act to protect the people and places they love. This region’s unique economy and ecology gives our efforts a nationwide reach. 

  • Modeling New Structures. We don’t just advocate for solutions, we create them. We are one of a few environmental and public health organizations that provides direct green services and develops new institutional structures while advocating for a safe and healthy environment.