A Lottery win for Green Living.
We have been awarded nearly £10,000 by the National Lottery Community Fund to support our exciting new Dorset Green Living Project. The aim of this one-year pilot project will engage groups of neighbours to work together to reduce their carbon footprint whilst saving money on their bills and building stronger local communities. The new funding from The National Lottery Community Fund has enabled us to set up the Project and recruit a coordinator, Rachel Lamb, who began work September 2019.
Since the release of the IPCC report last September, when scientists warned that ‘the 1.5C goal will require a drastic cut in greenhouse emissions’ within 12 years to avoid runaway climate change, ‘eco-anxiety’ has been on the rise. In Dorset people are becoming increasingly worried that failure to act will result in more flooding or wildfires ruining our precious countryside and causing severe food shortages and price rises. With greater focus on climate change and its impacts along with a heightened awareness in plastic contaminating the plastic, people are looking at ways that they can reduce their own impact.
The project is designed to help people regain hope via positive actions to combat climate change. Neighbourhood groups will meet up to explore the helpful tips provided in a free, specially designed manual. The project is designed to help and encourage one another to reduce carbon emissions and to face challenges together by sharing resources or skills locally (e.g. lending tools and lift sharing). Not only does it have a positive impact on the planet, people’s health and well-being but also households are estimated to save around £550 per year.
Pam Rosling, a Trustee of Sustainable Dorset and a leader for change in the community explains, ‘These manuals are full of great tips! Big changes can take time, but by incorporating some of these actions into your daily life you will soon notice how much greener your choices become which will have enormous benefits for the environment. Thanks to all those National Lottery players, we can now start to help local people save money and the planet at the same time.’
Trustee Kate Forrester, who took part in a similar scheme 4 years ago in Dorchester, added, ‘We had such fun getting together and going through the manual with our neighbours. We learnt a lot of useful tips and now use less water, electricity and gas. We cycle more, and we buy and use food much more wisely, so we’ve saved a lot of money on our bills and housekeeping too.’
Sustainable Dorset, the operating name of Dorset Agenda 21 (da21) raises awareness and involvement in environmental issues through work with community groups, individuals and businesses. The charity’s social media highlights sustainable activities throughout the county and has a network of eleven volunteer Sustainability Champions, based throughout Dorset, who work within their communities to encourage a more environmentally friendly Dorset.
If you would like to be part of this exciting new project in your local area, there’s more information here or please email Rachel firstname.lastname@example.org. The project aims to encourage and support up to 20 groups of around 6-8 households to work through the manual together at different locations across Dorset. We hope that people will become inspired to tell their friends and families about all the fun and simple ways that they can help the planet and their pocket.