Working as Churches Together:
Photo: Seascale Methodist and Local Community Clean Up Day
It will be great if different local churches talk to each other and decide to work together with their local community. ‘Churches Together’ Groups of churches can be an excellent means of coordinating local church and community action. You may want to consider all using the same ‘toolkit’ to reduce your carbon footprint across the churches and community or you may want to combine the strengths of different approaches and ‘toolkits’. Have a look at Community Matters.
Working with our Communities:
Climate change and 'living lightly' are issues for everybody and are ideally suited for the local churches to work in partnership with other parts of the local community in joint action, covering local and global concerns.
Some local schools are involved in Eco Schools, gaining eco status. Encourage schools, colleges, businesses in your community to participate. You may want to form a community group together.
Discuss with your community what climate change/environmental issues are important to you all and what action you might want to take individually and together. The Faiths4Change project can help you in thinking, planning, training for and carrying out your local project, including small grant funding.
Consider having a community eco day or eco event locally. Also consider linking any eco ‘event’ in your community with any of the regular local Cumbrian Shows. This may help stimulate wider community awareness and support.
Consider car sharing for shopping, church attendance, etc.
What about a Community garden/allotment?
Find out about Community LETs schemes, etc. LETS - Local Exchange Trading Systems or Schemes - are local community-based mutual aid networks in which people exchange all kinds of goods and services with one another, without the need for money. The following Cumbrian towns operate LETS schemes:
Barrow in Furness LETS
Carlisle - WASP
Kirkby Stephen LETS
Find out about Transition Towns. They aim to equip communities to respond to climate change and ‘peak oil’* by raising awareness of sustainable living and building local resilience in the near future. Communities are encouraged to seek out methods for reducing energy usage as well as increasing their own self reliance. *Peak oil is the point in time when the maximum rate of global petroleum production is reached, after which the rate of production enters terminal decline
Click here to see what other communities in Cumbria are doing done through the Sustainable Communities Project and the ongoing work of Sustainable Brampton and Penrith Action Towards Community Transition.
EARTH ABBEY GROWZONES
EarthAbbey are organising a new project: The Grow Zones project from EarthAbbey is a resource to help you get organised in your community. It aims to bring help and inspiration to your garden, wonderful food to your table, and fun and friendship to your life. A group of anything between 8 and 20 people club together to share skills and tools and help each other to transform their gardens, with the aim of growing more fruit and veg, decreasing food miles and having great fun in the process. Some groups may choose to work a community space together instead of gardens. Our aim is to encourage the formation of 50 or more teams of people across the country working each others gardens over for edible produce, and having great fun at the same time.
To introduce Grow Zones we are running a series of events across the country. If you would like to host an event and can work your local networks to get a goodly number (say 40 or so) people there, we will come, run the event for you, and get the process started. Please get in touch. We hope these events will produce several Grow Zones teams in each area.
Also if you simply know a few people, perhaps in your church or neighbourhood, who might be interested in forming just one Grow Zones team then please contact us and we will get you going. Contact us either through the website or phone 0117 9574652 More information about Grow Zones can be found here. Or for a recent article about Grow Zones on the A Rocha Living Lightly site.
Get Involved in Advocacy and Campaigning
See Community Matters for further ideas.
Lifestyle: Individual/Family, Lifestyle: Church Group, Lifestyle: Churches Thinking Globally & Acting Locally