In the first post of my blog series, I mentioned that, ultimately, my own individual actions might not have a huge impact on climate change but that doesn’t stop me wanting to play my part. It feels good to me to live in a way that reflects my values. However, it would be good to connect with others who want to go that step further in changing daily habits.
I’ve also been thinking about how taking an environmentally friendly approach to home life is often an issue of access and affordability. It seems to inevitably involve buying more expensive products (e.g cleaning products), or buying in bulk which is something many people can’t afford up front, no matter how passionate they feel about saving the earth. Not everyone can afford to ‘buy good, buy once’ and clothing and homewares without a massive carbon footprint are usually quite expensive. When looking to make changes, money can definitely feel like a barrier to sustainable living.
However, it’s been really heartening to look at some projects in and around Glasgow who are bringing people together to help make their homes that bit less wasteful and offering affordable, inclusive and sociable solutions. Often tackling climate change becomes synonymous with giving things up, doing without and our homes being sparse or ‘minimalist’. However, the projects I have looked into are about making our lives richer through connecting with others and taking a positive action, rather than giving something up. They are taking action on loneliness and social isolation as well as the environment.
1. Community arts venue, The Space in Calton have a community shop in partnership with Fare Share Glasgow, redistributing good quality surplus food for the community. The shop also has a range of environmentally friendly household products such as cleaning spray and sanitary towels. As with everything at The Space, including their cafe, everything is based on a Pay What You Decide Model. This means that those who can afford to pay full cost or even beyond, can support others to access things they need. I am really looking forward to going on a visit there next week with some of our Mind Waves volunteers to find out more.
2. Repair Cafe Glasgow run a monthly events at Kinning Park complex, where people can get help to fix their broken things and ultimately reduce the amount of landfill generated in our homes. The events are open to everyone and operate on a donation basis. Visit their website to see the huge range of items which have been given a new lease of life by their skilled volunteers! They also run workshops which help you learn to fix things for yourself. Tomorrow 20th July they are running a workshop on basic DIY, including how to use a power drill – it’s not too late to sign up here.
3. The Glasgow Eco Trust are currently undertaking an initiative to reduce the amount of waste created by dental products in our homes- you can send them any used toothbrushes and empty toothpaste tubes (which are difficult to dispose of in household recycling). The Eco Trust also run community groups throughout the year including community clean ups and community gardens, where people can come together for company, learn new skills and make a difference.
4. COPE Scotland will also be doing be doing their bit to save the planet in conjunction with the Eco Trust tomorrow Saturday 20th July! They’ll be at ‘D in the Park’ hosted by Drumchapel Cycle Hub, distributing FREE bamboo toothbrushes which can be composted at the end of their lifespan. COPE see taking care of the environment as a huge aspect of taking care of ourselves and others, they’ve made this lovely animation with tips on how we can do our bit for the environment. Enjoy!
Please get in touch if there are any initiatives in your area you’d like us to share information on!