“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has.” Margaret Mead
Plastic Free Swanage
In July 2019 Swanage became the 4th Dorset Town to achieve ‘Plastic Free Community’ Status from the campaign run by the charity Surfers Against Sewage in recognition of the efforts being made to reduce single-use plastic in the town, read press release here for more info. One of the requirements for this award was to set up a steering group which was the basis for Sustainable Swanage and a key part in the group’s establishment. Coming together for a collective goal like this has kickstarted many other projects and initiatives.
Another early aim for our group was setting a target to see another 1500 trees being planted in the town, one tree to represent each child that lives here. During the planting season autumn/winter 2019-20 we achieved this by reaching a total of 1600 trees planted across private gardens, schools, farms and verges. The group has become a sub-group with around 10 active volunteers who are now planning new planting projects and other greening initiatives around the town. Current projects include promoting increasing biodiversity in your gardens, growing your own food and learning about and appreciating nature.
Another sub-group who are working together to make it easier for local businesses to become more sustainable by providing information and establishing a co-operative approach. We have held two ‘Going Green is Good for Business’ events that have brought different people together to discuss what we can all do to minimise our impact. We are supporting businesses in becoming ‘plastic free’ and also achieving the Litter Free Coast and Sea Business Award. Find out more here.
Purbeck Energy Group
This is another sub group that is also made up of members of local parishes and towns. This spring of 2020 they are actively working on small and exicting community projects that will increase the ability of residents to obtain more of their energy from renewable sources. Watch this space.