INSPIRING WAYS TO GO GREENER
LAST year, the Parents Association of Grangecon NS challenged themselves to become a ‘zero waste’ organisation as far as possible.
This ambition was the spark for Go Greener with Grangecon which aims to encourage the village and the community to lower its ecological footprint.
‘We take a positive approach that is solution-based. Part of this has been highlighting small, simple changes to go greener,’ said Jennifer Page, of Go Greener with Grangecon.
The group may be small, but it has already achieved a number of successes. These include a partnership with a local signmaker to create ‘no junk mail’ stickers for homes in the village. They are also working with local publicans to recycle crisp packets and bottle caps. Tips and tricks to reduce waste are shared regularly on the group’s social media channels.
‘Among our initiatives, we have a party pack that people can borrow- for a small donation to cover costs- for children’s birthday parties. It contains re-usable plates and homemade bunting. It’s been really successful and has helped to reduce the volume of single-use plastics going to landfill,’ said Jennifer.
Go Greener with Grangecon launched a ‘give and take’ box in the village recently to encourage people to reduce their food waste. Anyone with excess fruit from trees in their gardens can leave anything spare in the box for others to take.
The group also signed up with the Spark Change Challenge, a collaboration between Trinity College Dublin and The Wheel to encourage people to enter new or established projects that inspire their communities to become more environmentally, economically and/ or socially sustainable, in line with the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals for 2030.
Their hard work has earned Go Greener with Grangecon a place on the shortlist for two prizes in the inaugural National Spark Change Sustainability Awards.
A key emphasis of Go Green with Grangecon is to measure the impact of their initiatives. As part of this, a survey was distributed to over 200 households in the village earlier in the year with the aim of learning more about the ecological footprint of the community. There are plans to organise a focus group within the community to discuss the survey results.
‘I hope it will continue to evolve. We’re trying to encourage change without putting too much pressure on anyone,’ said Jennifer.