What is Every Action Counts?
Every Action Counts came out of a central government consultation with a range of voluntary and community sector organisations to explore how the sector could contribute to securing a more sustainable future.
It’s designed to help local community groups, clubs and societies take action together to:
- protect the environment
- create a fairer world
- improve quality of life
The Five Action Areas
The actions that community groups, clubs and societies are being asked to take have been divided into five areas:
For each area, simple actions to take will be suggested.
What sort of actions could your group take?
Save energy: could you install energy-saving light bulbs in your meeting place?
Travel wisely: could you find out how many miles each of your members travels to attend your meetings / events, and plan a car-share or car-free meeting or event?
Shop ethically: could you appoint someone to buy fairly traded tea and coffee for your meetings?
Save our resources: could you commit your group to using reusable items wherever possible?
Care for your area: could you comment on local plans and decisions about a greener future for your community?
If every group, club or society in the UK were to take just a handful of actions across these areas, they would make a significant contribution to making the world a better place
Why has Every Action Counts been developed?
Every Action Counts is a response to the need for One Planet Living.
The theory of One Planet Living, developed by the WWF, is:
- Carbon dioxide emissions and greenhouse gases are causing the world’s climate to change
- if everyone in the world lived like we do in Europe, we would need three planets to support us
- therefore, we need to reduce our environmental impact so that one planet is enough!
- by making simple changes in the way we live, we can improve the planet for future generations.
On 17 July 2008 Voluntary and Community Action hosted an Every Action Counts networking event and Environmental Funders briefing. Participants enjoyed the presentations and feedback was positive, "I came back buzzing with ideas for both our school group but also for our Parish" commented Julia Aked. The morning was packed with presentations about the Every Action Counts programme, including energy saving tips, greening up your local area and influencing public policy, and finished with briefings by two local environmental funders.
Every Action Counts is a national programme that provides advice and support to voluntary and community organisations which are looking to reduce their impact on the environment tackle climate change and improve their local area. With funders increasingly looking at organisations' environmental credentials, now is a good time to register. You can do this online at www.everyactioncounts.org.uk or you could invite a Community Champion to come and introduce the programme to your group.
Your local Community Champion is Dave a volunteer with Voluntary and Community Action. Dave has always been passionate about protecting the environment and can be contacted via Voluntary and Community Action.
Every Action Counts message is that any group, however small, can make a difference. Groups can register with Every Action Counts to receive access to online toolkits and other resources; evaluate how future-friendly the group currently is; log actions taken to become more sustainable; and track their progress. Groups that register receive a bumper 'Community Pack' containing useful resources to get started on the road to sustainable development, and a fun game to begin the process of self evaluation. Every Action Counts aims to involve some 14,000 community groups over the lifetime of the project.
Every Action Counts is looking for over 1,000 local community activists to lead change in their neighbourhoods. Community champions will help community groups in their area to take stock of their current environmental impact, and to create their own sustainable development action plans.
Prospective champions will receive two days of free, accredited, training. After training, champions will commit to meeting with a small number of local community groups/clubs or societies and help them take stock of their current environmental impact and produce an action plan. Champions will have access to resources including toolkits and a regular newsletter. Support is also available via the EAC website, and travel and reasonable expenses will be covered.
Register your interest in becoming an Every Action Counts Community Champion by contacting BTCV 01302 388 841 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org. or through the on-line registration form
Every Action Counts Fundraising Guide for Environmental Projects
Every Action Counts has issued a short guide that aims to help organisations who wish to raise money for environmental projects. The 25 page guide can be downloaded from their website and in addition to identifying potential funders also covers how to develop a successful bid. The guide can be downloaded from: Fundraising Guide for Environmental Projects
The Third Sector Delaration on Climate Change
Every Action Counts has launched the Third Sector Declaration on Climate Change. The declaration has two main sections. The first section recognises the crucial role of the third sector and the importance of understanding the link between social justice and climate change reduction. The second section deals with the commitment of tackling climate change and provides a plan of action to be taken by those signing up to the declaration.
You can join other organisations in committing your organisation to face this challenge by:
- recognising the need for urgent action at all levels to combat climate change
- adopting public plans to reduce carbon emissions
- enabling members, service users and clients to meet this challenge and reduce their own carbon emissions
- supporting national legal targets for greenhouse gas emissions
- working in partnership with government and others to reach or exceed these targets
- working together as a sector to inspire and encourage action on this issue.
Visit www.everyactioncounts.org.uk/declaration to find out more.