Eco Champion

A fast growing population of Pembrokeshire people, making and shaping the right decisions to live more responsibly.

#pembsecochamps #doyourbit

Pembrokeshire Eco Champions

There's a growing population of Eco Champions in Pembrokeshire...and there's a huge variety of ways local people are choosing to change how they live...especially in terms of what they buy, what they use and what they decide to throw away.

Environmental issues are now at the forefront of everybody's minds and we're all becoming aware of the urgency with which we need to reduce our impact on the planet and its precious resources...but because these are often such complex and confusing issues, it can be very difficult to decide what are the best things to do.

The Pembrokeshire Eco Champion project's aims are simple:

To celebrate those among us already doing great things locally and to offer advice and encouragement to those who want to do great things...but just haven't started yet.

If you're a ready-made Eco Champion and want to highlight some of the great things you're doing, please get in touch with us!

If you want to be an Eco Champion and need a little bit of advice or support to get there, then our Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge is definitiely for you! Scroll down to find out about the 9 tasks or Sign Up here.

The list of things we could be doing to save the planet is almost endless, but for now this project is mostly concerned with everyone 'doing their bit'...getting as many people doing the basic things right, leaving as small a footprint as is possible and a clean, green environment for future generations to enjoy.

Be sure to visit our Facebook page and contribute to this wonderful movement of Pembrokeshire people.

If you want to contact us you can email ecochampions@pembrokeshire.gov.uk or call 07771 843113

1 Introducing the Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Project.

This short animation will hopefully give you a flavour of what the Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Project is all about.

So what is it all about?

It's a project funded by the Welsh Government Leader Programme via Arwain Sir Benfro and match funded by Pembrokeshire County Council.

It aims to celebrate and support the work of active and aspiring Eco Champions in all parts of Pembrokeshire…to seek out the people who are considered or willing to be Champions in their local area, so we can share good practice; disseminate useful, inspiring information and encourage others to ‘do their bit’ by living more responsibly; reducing waste and ensuring Pembrokeshire remains a clean and ‘green’ place to live. 

If you're a ready-made Eco Champion and want to highlight some of the great things you're doing, please get in touch with us!

If you want to be an Eco Champion and need a little bit of advice or support to get there, then our Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge is definitiely for you!

Watch the movie below, scroll down to find out about the 9 tasks or Sign Up here.

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2 The Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge.

The Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge recognises there are many people who want to be considered a 'Champion' but they might not necessarily know what they could do to become one!

Our Eco Champion Challenge lays out a series of tasks (9 in total) for you to tackle in your own time and to a level you're comfortable with. You can meet basic criteria...or you can push on and take each task onto planet-changing levels! 

All tasks are designed to give you ideas and encourage you to pass on the things you learn along the way...so before long, we're all 'doing our bit'. 

Are you up for taking on the Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge? 

Fill this simple Sign Up Form to start the Challenge today!

Scroll down this page to find the guide to each of the 9 criteria.

They're easy to remember because together they spell out the word C.H.A.M.P.I.O.N.S

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3 The Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Trail.

The Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Trail is a journey...an outdoor experience you can share with others and a great way to make sure you've got the facts about Recycling and Waste Collections absolutely correct!

The trail can be found in a number of woodland locations around Pembrokeshire but can also be transported to other locations...maybe even your town or village? 

You need to navigate your way to 10 wooden boards that each contain a unique QR Code which you can scan with your smartphone or tablet to open a series of webpages linked to The Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Quiz!

Find and submit all of the answers to all of the questions and you/your team could win a fantastic prize only available to Pembrokeshire Eco Champions.

To find out more or to request The Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Trail at your event or in a location near you, email: ecochampions@pembrokeshire.gov.uk 

   
4  The Award.

As our project is all about finding, appointing and celebrating Pembrokeshire's ever-growing population of Eco Champions, it's only right that we produced something a little bit special to present our Champions with to recognise their amazing eco-efforts.

So we teamed up with some wonderful people from Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority and some equally splendid pupils from Portfield Special School in Haverfordwest and created the Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Commemorative Coaster!

These unique, bespoke coasters have been made out of beautifully aged and weathered reclaimed oak signposts that have stood and shown the way around our glorious Pembrokeshire Coastal Path for the last 20 years! These really are part of the very fabric of our beautiful National Park...and one of them could be yours!

They will be awarded to anyone who completes The Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge...and they come with one extra special detail...each coaster doubles as an 'entry ticket' to a very special Eco Champion Prize Draw!

Watch this short movie to find out more...or continue to scroll down the page to see the 9 tasks that make up our Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge.

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C  Campaign!

The first Task of your Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge is to 'Campaign'.

To get behind an existing group or initiative operating locally or perhaps further afield, understanding that one person - (YOU) can make the world of difference.

But first, some important background information is needed...

We've highlighted a few websites that you should take a little bit of time visiting, just so you know what you're talking about in future tasks.

Follow these links (websites will open in a new window so you don't get lost!). 

My Recycling Wales

Recycle Now

Recycle For Wales

Pembrokeshire County Council Waste and Recycling

Wrap Cymru

Keep Wales Tidy

Love Food Hate Waste

Love Your Clothes 

The 'Campaign' task gives you the opportunity to consider joining or even starting things such as Plastic Free Groups in your area; support existing or launch new Community Fridge initiatives in your neighbourhood; get behind the growing Re-Fill network or to take responsibility for a 2 Minute Street Clean board in your town or village.

There's loads to learn and plenty of opportunity to make an impressive start to your Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge.

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H  Help!

A major theme running through our Eco Champion project is the importance of building networks and communities, so it's very appropriate that the 'Help' task follows on from 'Campaign'. 

This task requires all of the learning undertaken in the previous one...plus a little bit more, because this task is all about helping friends/family/neighbours to raise or improve their levels of Recycling.

In line with Welsh Government blue-print guidelines, there is a whole new waste collections service arriving in Pembrokeshire from October 2019 and some people will need some 'Help' understanding what they need to do....and this is where you (a Pembrokeshire Eco Champion in the making) can play your part. 

Get a good understanding of the information in the literature listed below and then spread the message to 'Help' others meet the required standards. Yes, its 'change'...and often Pembrokeshire struggles with that, but we beleive this to be a hugely positive change that offers all Pembrokeshire residents the chance to recycle a great deal more of their domestic waste and dramatically reduce what ends up harming the environment at landfill sites.

As with all of the tasks in the Pembrokeshire Eco Challenge, you should never underestimate the difference once person (you) can make!

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A  Affect!

By 'Affect' we mean 'make a change'...and you've proved in the 'Help' task that you can handle it, so this time it's about you and the products you buy. We expect you'll have heard the term 'Reduce, Reuse and Recycle' a fair bit by now, and this task is a real opportunity for you to prove you're doing all three things. 

The best thing you can do is 'Reduce' the sheer amount of 'things' you buy...whether its food items, clothes, cleaning products or electrical gadgets. Always ask yourself if you really need it before buying it. If you think you can't get by without it, consider buying alternatives that arent made from or packaged in excessive or non-recyclable materials. Can you even find or make an alternative to that item? Could you find a different place to buy it that packages or transports it in better ways? If you don't know already, this is a good time to fully understand what is meant by 'food miles'. It's important to exercise a little bit of caution here because some 'alternative' products that are arriving on the market that claim to be 'compostable' or 'recyclable' might still prove difficult for your local authority to collect along with your other waste because there isn't yet a process available for them. You may think you're saving the planet by buying them but you may accidentally be creating a whole other problem. That's why it's so important to know what items you CAN recycle and WHERE you can take/leave them.

If you're unable to 'Reduce' or 'Replace' certain items, consider if you're able to 'Re-use' them. By that we mean, are you able to breathe new life into them or fix them or replace parts instead of the whole thing or maybe even find an entriely new use for them? Maybe go back and check you understand the information we gave you during the 'Help' task?

If you can't 'Reduce' or 'Re-use', then it's time to consider if it can be 'Recycled'. All three of these things mean less 'stuff' ends up in landfill.

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M  Mend!

To complete the 'Mend' task, you simply need to show that you've saved something (ideally a few things) that were considered broken or past their best and destined for landfill. The way to do this is to fix, mend, glue, paint, screw, brace, sew, replace a part, oil, recharge, upcycle, restore....the list goes on! 

All Eco-Champions know that we need to get away from this 'disposable' culture we've allowed ourselves to fall into and the ability to 'Mend' something goes a long way to reducing waste. If you want to learn or develop the skills needed to 'diagnose' a problem and then solve it, you should speak to our partners at The Pembrokeshire Remakery CIC. These guys are pro's at fixing things and they run 'Repair Cafes' in different areas around Pembrokeshire throughout the year...as a Pembrokeshire Eco Champion you should definitely get in touch with them. They're based at The Green Shed in Haverfordwest.

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P Participate!

Pembrokeshire Eco Champions are upwardly mobile wherever possible. They are active seeking opportunities to get involved in all kinds of environmental activity and while they're always searching to reduce their impact on the planet, they're also commited to clearing up some of the mess that's threatening to spoil our streets, our woodlands, our coastline and our seas. 

To tick off the 'Participate' task of the Pembrokeshire Eco Challenge, we want you to take part in 2 beach or litter-pick events that are happening locally. There are a number of groups and organisations around the county who organsie and promote their own events throughout the year. There's always something happening soon for you to join...and it's a great way to meet other Eco Champions too! 

You may decide to organise a regular or one-off litter-pick event of your own for this task? If so, our friends at Keep Wales Tidy will be happy to explain how and what you need to think about to make it happen smoothly and safely.

The Pembrokeshire Eco Champion project has a number of 2 Minute Street Clean A-Frame boards to give out to responsible communities. They need someone (a potential Eco Champion?) to take ownership of one and ensure it's well stocked, publicised and maintained. Could that 'someone' be you? If so, email ecochampions@pembrokeshire.gov.uk 

Another way to meet fellow Champions and 'Participate' in other Eco-Activities is to join one of Pembrokeshire's Time Banks...these are brilliant ways to maximise what you get out of your time on beach or street cleans by claiming Time Credits which can be spent in a variety of ways locally. We're delighted to have strong links with Pembrokeshire Association of Voluntary Services (PAVS) and they'll be happy to introduce you to your nearest Time Bank. 

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I Inform!

The 'Inform' task doesn't really need much in terms of explaining. All we want you to do here is decide on an environmental issue that you're really passionate about, frustrated with, or feel that people need to understand better...and then choose a way to get your message out there. It might be something you've learned while you've been tackling the Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge, or it might be something you've known and cared about for a while. 

It could be a 'change' that you've decided to make since completing the 'Affect' task and want to convince other people to consider?

It could be that you want to create your own way of explaining the new Kerbside Collection measures that are coming to Pembrokeshire in October 2019? You might be able to present the information better than anyone else and you might well be the reason that other people fully change how they recycle at home.

If you chose in the 'Campaign' task to support, join or start a Plastic Free Community Group or a Community Fridge, this task might prove to be a very useful way of helping to promote that or encourage others to do the same?

You might even be so engaged in your Pembrokekshire Eco Champion Challenge that you want to 'Inform' others about it? There could be even more Eco Champions because of you!

 

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O Organise!

OK, so you're nearly at the end of your Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge now and we're asking you to 'Organise' something.

The criteria for this task is much the same as the 'Inform' task...except for this task we need you to do some talking! Organise to give a short talk, or presentation or maybe even chair a meeting in your community to tell them about one of the other tasks in the Challenge.

Word of mouth is really important when trying to bring about a change in behaviour. Everyone claims to want change but few are willing to be that change. Even if this is is outside of your everyday comfort zones, remember the Pembrokeshire Eco Champion hashtag #doyourbit

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N Network!

If you're part of The Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge, you should know that you're doing it along with a great many other local people and you're all soon to become a part of a wonderful 'Network'. There are lots of different ways you can connect with other Champions...you can find loads of them on our Pembrokeshire Eco Champions Facebook page....you can meet plenty more when you're out there 'Participating' in beach or street cleans...and there's a fair few Pembrokeshire Eco Champions who have joined up with the Pembrokeshire Time Banking Network too. 

All you need to do to complete the 'Network' task is connect in some way with someone else who is working on their own Pembokeshire Eco Champion Challenge and get involved or support each other on one of the tasks.

If you can't find anyone to link with, drop us an email ecochampions@pembrokeshire.gov.uk and we can introduce you to someone who'll be glad to have you involved in one of their tasks and will be glad to help you with one of yours too. Thats how 'Networks'...well, work!

(You've practically finished the Challenge now! Just one final task to sign it all off)

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S Share!

 If you've watched all of the other movies related to each of the tasks on the Pembrokeshire Eco Champion Challenge, you'll know that to prove or evidence all of the amazing things you've been doing since you started, we need you to 'Share' it all with us....so if you've been 'Sharing' as you've been going along, CONGRATULATIONS! You are now officially a Pembrokeshire Eco Champion!!.....however, if you haven't been sharing things with us yet, you'll need to so we can officially sign your Challenge off.

To 'Share' you can send us proof of each of the tasks in an email or you can make a post (or a series of posts) on social media. We've chosen two hashtags for the Pembrokeshire Eco Champion project so it's easier for us to track all of the people who are 'Sharing' online. If you do post online be sure to use #pembsecochamps and #doyourbit so we can locate your post and enjoy seeing all that you've done.

If you'd prefer not to post on social media, you can email what you have to us at ecochampions@pembrokeshire.gov.uk or you can drop us a message and we'll provide you with a postal address to send us proof of any tasks you've done.

You can choose the best ways to 'Share' your experiences....we don't mind how...just make sure we get to hear/see about all of them....then your mission will be complete and you can take your place among this very special and growing number of Pembrokeshire Eco Champions. Take a bow. You're amazing!

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