The University of Gloucestershire Students’ Union is proud to be developing an ambitious five stranded project, driving student-led sustainability across campus life and into the local community.
Greener Gloucestershire offer students opportunities to gain amazing experiences and skills, develop their employability, meet other inspiring people and be a part of something truly important at UoG.
The strands include development and support for student led social enterprises, including the Cheltenham Chilli Company, in which students grow chillis on campus, and sell the products locally to create an ethical, sustainable and effective business model. The Students’ Green Fund also offers funding to student-led social enterprise, having given out just over £13,000 in funding in year 1.
Additionally we’re offering NUS’ Green Impact to local businesses, working with the Gfirst LEP to support Gloucestershire businesses as leaders for sustainability in the UK, while giving students the opportunity to conduct environmental audits in local businesses, gaining skills to act as change agents for sustainability in the workplaces of the future.
The project has also seen the development of a visual and physical focus through the creation of a ‘Little Green Shop’ which acts as a student swap-shop, preventing waste and encouraging reuse (#relove). Additionally, the shop sells the products produced by innovative student businesses and social enterprises.
Another exciting strand of our project is the development of the Global Athlete program, which engages sports teams, supporting and rewarding them to integrate sustainability into their team. Almost half of UoG sports teams will take part in this innovative program, and we hope to roll it out to other universities beyond Gloucestershire in the future.
In the summer of 2015 it will also be launching the first pilot of the Big Green Gap Year (Summer Placements). This project has already received national recognition in the Observer top 50 New Radicals, and we have high hopes for its legacy as a national scheme. The pilot will offer the opportunity to students who will be starting at university in September ’15 to take part in two 6 week placements, in a local business and a local charity, acting to gain real-world skills for sustainability within workplaces, as well as supporting communities and receiving a living wage.