22 July, 2021
Gloucestershire Youth Support Team is awarded Gold Standard Green Impact Award
Over the last 6 months, members of the YST Environmental Task Group, lead by Toni Nixon have been working hard to gather evidence and create processes in order to meet our contractual agreement with the GEM project* to undertake the Green Impact Award.
The Green Impact Project is a United Nations award-winning programme designed to support environmentally and socially sustainable practice within organisations. It is accredited by the NUS and we have been working closely with the University of Gloucestershire to achieve the award.
In previous years we have achieved the Bronze Award and the Silver Award. We are very proud to have been awarded Gold this year – one of 9 local organisations to receive the Gold standard.
Toni Nixon, YST Quality and Performance Officer, said:
It was great to be involved in something that is so important to me personally. The support from staff and their willingness to get involved was heart-warming. The central support from Shaw Trust was amazing. They are making a commitment to greener practices and allowed us to switch to Fairtrade and recycled products. It has been a very rewarding process, enabling us to see what can be achieved in a relatively short period of time. I am proud to be part of a service that is proactive in taking action to address what is a very important issue “.
To achieve the award, we were required to deliver several actions to demonstrate how we are committed to helping the environment and to creating long lasting positive change.
Some of the specific examples that have helped us achieve the award are:
- Communicating environmental work, campaigns and issues to our staff via email and a regular newsletter
- Running a pedometer challenge for staff in the service - over 30 staff took part
- Developing a set of resources of walking and cycling routes for staff to use with young people, on their lunch breaks with plans to develop staff walking sessions later in the year
- Implementing the use of ecological or plant-based cleaning products
Kat Aukett, YST Operations Director, said:
It was with great pleasure that I presented the Gold Green Impact award to Becca Wrightson from the Youth Support Team in Gloucestershire. This is a real achievement by a group of committed individuals, who have put a lot of time and effort into not only gaining the award but educating the full YST in ways that we can all make a positive difference to our environment. Thank you to everyone and well done”.
Becca Wrightson, Senior Admin Officer and Kat Aukett, Operations Director in the garden at our Whaddon centre.
The team are very proud of their achievements and have got their sights on a platinum award next year.
* The YST employs a GEM Navigator Developer - Navigator Developers offer 1 to 1 advice, guidance and support to help people overcome some of these barriers on a journey to improving their situation and success.