Student clean-up campaign scoops top national award
Press release issued: 8 November 2013
A hugely successful end-of-term campaign to collect students’ unwanted items and donate them to charity has won a prestigious ‘Community Champion of the Year Award’ in recognition of its environmental impact. The ‘Big GIVE’ initiative, which collected nine tonnes of goods and raised £16,000 for local charities this year, was praised at the Chartered Institute of Wastes Management (CIWM) Awards for Environmental Excellence.
Run annually by the University of Bristol, with the Students’ Union (UBU) and UNITE, volunteers work tirelessly to ensure around 4,000 first year students take their ‘waste’ to drop-off points at 15 university-owned halls and six UNITE properties.
A vast array of goods – from clothes to shoes, to food, kitchenware and bedding – is collected, sorted and distributed to 12 charities, which then reuse the items through community projects or sell them in charity shops.
This year, it was run alongside the ‘The Summer Student Clear Out’ – a campaign to target private lets across the city, run in partnership with UWE Bristol and Bristol City Council to raise money for the British Heart Foundation.
Both schemes have had a profound impact on unsightly waste and fly-tipping at the end of term, helping to improve the quality of life for local residents and aid relationship building between neighbours in areas with a high student population.
Rose Rooney, from the Sustainability Department at the University of Bristol, said: “We were all delighted to win this national award. It really showcases everyone’s hard work, the importance of partnership working across Bristol and the phenomenal effort Bristol's students put into managing their environmental impact. We are very proud to be recognised by The Chartered Institute of Waste Management for this.”
The judges for the CIWM Excellence Awards 2013 included John Ingham, environment editor of the Daily Express, Gemma Clinton, vice chair of the Local Authority Recycling Advisory Committee, Marcus Gover, director of market development for WRAP, Mohamed Osmani, chair of CIRIA’s Sustainability Advisory Panel and senior lecturer at Loughborough University, and Stephen Didsbury, Head of Waste & Street Services for London Borough of Bexley.
A wide range of companies across the industrial spectrum, as well as councils, public sector organisations and individuals scooped awards, which recognise and reward companies that have introduced successful measures to reduce their environmental impact through more sustainable waste and resource management.
The winners were announced at the London Marriott Grosvenor Square hotel yesterday [7 November], at an awards ceremony hosted by TV presenter Michaela Strachan.
- The University of Bristol is also a finalist for two awards at the Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges (EAUC) Green Gown Awards, which recognise the exceptional sustainability initiatives being undertaken by universities and colleges across the UK. The winners will be announced on 12 November.