Young People Making Big Change

Daniels & Miller Fight to Create a Sustainable Future for our Community and Beyond

Cash Daniels is a young river conservationist working to save the aquatic ecosystem. At twelve years old, "The Conservation Kid", became a part of conservation efforts when he was only seven years old after finding a plastic straw on the beach. Daniels declared that he knew he had to do something the protect the animals that he loved, so he began organizing river cleanups that eventually led to over 15,000 pounds of trash being removed from the river.

That figure continues to grow as Daniels relentlessly pushes on, calling for change. Cash is also the co-founder of The Cleanup Kids, an organization geared toward “protecting the trees, the seas, and everything in between.” He explains that his hope for the project is to "inspire other kids to do what we are doing by setting a goal to pick up one million pieces of trash by the end of the year.”

Currently at around 500,000 pieces and halfway to this goal, Cash speaks on his future plans as he works toward putting monofilament bins into national and state parks to safely dispose of fishing lines. Daniels’ fierce environmental advocacy earned him a top five spot in Time Magazine's "Kid of the Year" competition.

Despite his significant impact locally and nationally, Daniels continues to fight for greater change. Looking to the future, Cash shared his hope to see Chattanooga and the world as “a beautiful place with no plastic pollution.” He believes this dream, through raised awareness and hard work, is one that can be achieved, saying, “Everybody can make a change no matter how old or young you are.”

Daniels is an inspiring representation of everything our world can and will be and he reminds us all that, "Kids may be a small part of the population, but we are 100% of the future.”

For more information on Cash Daniels and his work, visit:


Similar to Daniels’ environmental pursuits, 18-year-old Lottie Miller has committed to furthering the protection of native bees. Upon learning about our area's local pollinators, Miller researched and discovered mason bees are a genus of bees native to Chattanooga, unlike honey bees which are typically associated with beekeeping and agriculture.

While studying mason bees, Miller found that mason bees are actually more efficient pollinators than honey bees. Upon discovering this, she committed to spreading awareness about mason bees and how they can help our local ecosystems. Mason bees live in holes sealed off with mud for their nests. Given this knowledge, Miller set out to create boxes with local mud sources as makeshift habitats to attract and encourage mason bee population growth.

Miller emphasized the importance of this issue, saying, “Honey bees are experiencing colony collapse, so encouraging mason bee populations could reverse the potential negative impacts on our environment. Beyond keeping our natural areas healthy and supporting plant life, this issue is important for keeping our agriculture going and sustaining recreational spaces. It is more important to our daily life than people realize.”

Looking forward, Lottie Miller hopes to continue educating people about bees by bringing more awareness to how we can work to positively benefit the ecosystems of Chattanooga and beyond.

For more information about bees and how you can help make a difference in your community, visit:

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