Brand new for 2020 we have the ‘Sustainability Award’. This award recognises a society who has actively promoted sustainability within a wide range of their activities. Importantly when we talk about sustainability, we include cultural/social sustainability, environmental sustainability, and economic sustainability. This gives lots of scope for societies to play to their individual strengths and personalise it to their group. The panel was happy to see there were a range of society types nominated for this award, not just the typical environmental societies this award would usually attract.
A huge congratulations goes to Eco Education, a brand-new society this academic year. The Eco Education Society is all about educating people on the environment and environmental issues; they instil sustainability into all the activities they do and strongly emphasise it among their members.
“EcoEducation Society does so much to be sustainable and adhere to sustainable living. We have had a speaker on recycling come in, we are constantly talking about how to live a more eco-friendly life and most people in the society use reusable bottles.” – Anonymous nominator
During the past academic year, the group established a weekly series of talks focusing on sustainability, the climate crisis and practical ways members can do their bit to help. Throughout the year they have discussed a wide range of topics and touched upon a range of disciplines. Some examples include various political focused session, lifestyle choices such as their ‘Living the Vegan and Vegetarian Life’ session, to more diverse topics like ‘Environmental Movements and Sustainability in Art’. They have also had some great guest speakers, featuring the likes of Angharad Massow from Ceredigion County Council talking about Recycling, to our local MP, Ben Lake, talking about climate change.
Despite being a new group, they have become one of the most prominent societies focused on the wellbeing of the world and crucially the members of the society. They had a dedicated session to Eco Anxiety, outlining way to stay positive in the fight for the planet. They also played to their society's strength and organised a couple of ‘Forest Walks’. Not only does spending time in nature greatly benefit the wellbeing of individuals, these walks enabled students to become familiar with their surroundings and discover some of the local hotspots of green spaces.
Collaboration and exploration have featured a lot in the group’s activities over the past year. On top of the previously mentioned guest speakers, the group has gotten involved with other student groups. They teamed up with the English and Creative Writing Society to run one of their Book & Cake sessions with an environmental twist. They also participated in a range of litter picks organised by fellow student groups and local groups. One thing the panel particularly highlighted was their ‘Eco-Friendly Shop Crawl!’. During this they set out to explore the sustainability oriented shops around Aberystwyth giving students the knowledge to make environmentally conscious choices when shopping.
Finally, all their fundraising activities have had a sustainable emphasis. They have hosted bake sales, flower sales, a clothes swap and more. All the money they have raised has gone towards various eco-related charities.
“EcoEdSoc has worked very hard to establish themselves this year and plans to continue their work in trying to make more of a difference in the world.” – Anonymous nominator
Overall, from their weekly sessions, collaborations, and various explorations; Eco Education has put sustainability at the forefront of everything they have done this past year. They are enabling students to educate themselves, providing them with practical ways of leading an eco-friendly lifestyle, and most importantly they have established themselves as an inclusive society. The SU is eager to see what the Eco Education Society get up to next year, and we hope you are too!
Why not get involved yourself? Check out EcoEd Soc here: