Environmental Health
Healthy Home Environment
  Education & OUtreach  
  Who We Are  l  Speaking/Presentations  l  Displays  l School Programs  l  Contact Us  

Who We Are

The Education and Outreach Program is dedicated to helping protect the health of Thurston County residents in ways that are affected by their environment. In a typical year, we carry out programs on:

  • toxic materials in the home and yard
  • septic systems
  • wells and drinking water
  • watershed protection

We offer presentations and guest speakers on a variety of topics, school programs, and displays (see below for descriptions). We also provide numerous publications, visit the Environmental Materials webpage for a list.

Speaking Presentations

The Education and Outreach Program is available for presentations to your workgroup or community group. Talks can be tailored to your timeframe and audience.

The following is a sampling of topics we offer:

  • Protect Kids from Toxins — Children have more exposure and are more sensitive to common toxins such as solvents, pesticides, and heavy metals found around our homes and yards. Learn basic, low-cost steps you can take to protect children from toxins, so they can reach their fullest potential.
    Presentations can be geared to childcare staff (Stars credit is available) or parents. Handouts such as lead-test swabs, Mr. Yuk stickers, and refrigerator wipe-off message boards are included.
  • Common Sense Gardening — How to make your garden thrive without using chemical products; how to use integrated pest management to control weeds and pests in your yard, garden, and lawn. Handouts include Common Sense Gardening guides.
  • Household Hazardous Waste 101 — How to read labels and choose safer products for your household. Can include making a multi-purpose “green” cleaner to bring home.


The following displays are available for loan at your public place, school setting, or retail area. We can also staff these displays at educational events. Click on the display names to see a photo:

School Programs

Get Out of My Hair: Toxins in Personal Care — grades 6-12

Teens are a primary target for sale of personal care products – yet some ingredients used to make cosmetics, lotion, deodorant, shampoo, and hair dye have been linked to cancer and may cause reproductive and environmental harm.

Join us for a 55 or 75-minute presentation on toxins in personal care products and alternatives teens can choose to protect themselves. We’ll learn about health concerns, how to read labels, helpful websites, and safer alternatives. The students will make an all-natural lip balm to take home, to remind them they can keep looking and smelling good without toxic products! We request groups of 10 to 30 students and are happy to schedule multiple presentations to accommodate everyone.

Hazards on the Homefront — grades 6-12

Learn about hazards of common household products to people and the environment. This 55-minute class teaches students how to read product labels for toxicity levels and proper use, storage, and disposal. A fast-paced bingo game teaches students about alternative products and an experiment comparing cleaners lets students determine first-hand whether less-toxic products are effective! We request groups of 10 to 30 students and are happy to schedule multiple presentations to accommodate everyone.

Used Oil Recycling — grades 9-12

Invite a speaker to come into your classroom and discuss ideas for environmentally-friendly driving. Recycling used motor oil is one way that drivers can maintain their cars, as well as protect the environment. Information on transportation alternatives, as well as carpooling, trip reduction, and hazardous materials disposal is presented in an interactive 35-minute presentation. Key chains and bumper stickers are provided.

Contact Us

Our phone number is 360-867-2674 (TDD for the hearing impaired is 360-867-2603).

Contact us by email with your comments, questions, or requests.

We are located at the Thurston County Public Health and Social Services Department:

412 Lilly Rd. NE
Olympia, WA 98506-5132

map/driving directions [PDF]

Our mailing address is:

Thurston County Environmental Health
412 Lilly Rd. NE
Olympia, WA 98506-5132

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Open Daily
8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Gates close at 4:45 p.m.

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  • Household Hazardous
    Materials & Education

This page last updated: 07/07/21