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The University is a part of the local community and our students and staff have a number of positive impacts within the community through volunteering and charity events. As part of the sustainability strategy we engage and support activities and groups within the community who are taking action to improve the local environment and build connections.

Community covers the influence the University can have on the wider environment, particularly in how and what goods and services we purchase. We work with the procurement team and utilise NetPositives to work with our supply chain to determine what their priorities are and via the Procurement Policy, encourage staff with purchasing responsibilities to consider sustainability and long term running costs when purchasing new equipment.

We have partnered with the British Heart Foundation for over 5 years to help reduce waste being left in alleyways in the surrounding streets at the end of the academic year, and instead donate unwanted, good quality items to charity. In 2018, 1,207 bags worth approximately £16, 898 were donated to the BHF.  The donations have helped save 98 tonnes of CO2. The BHF return to provide CPR training to all Residential Assistants and run sessions as part of Personal Development Weeks in November, training over 50 students.

1207 bags donated to British Heart Foundation

At the end of each academic year we identify any abandoned bikes that are left in bike shelters, unclaimed bikes are donated to Bren Bikes for spare parts or repairs. 

VeggieFest is a regular fixture in the calendar. Inspired by National Vegetarian week, the first VeggieFest was held in 2017 to encourage people to go veggie for a week and dispel the myths surrounding plant based diets. Now in its fourth year, VeggieFest welcomes stalls from restaurants and societies across Chester as well as departments from across the University who are keen to showcase the plant-based food and products that are on offer. The mini-festival focuses on plant-based lifestyles as a way of reducing carbon footprints. VeggieFest 2020 will also include more demonstrations and workshops and welcomes members of the community to attend.


VeggieFest stall
Stall at VeggieFest

Our Green Impact teams (now referred to as Climate Action) run a number of charity events, including Seaborne's Library Caring Cup project, which raised over £1000 for ShareAid. Staff from the University's Seaborne Library organised a Caring Cups campaign. They encouraged staff and students across the institution to fill re-used disposable coffee cups with loose change. The cups were collected in December 2018 and raised £430.70. Additional activities including bake sales, winter crafting workshops and a pop-up swap shop for preloved clothes and accessories and toys raised an additional £450.  The Seaborne Library team were  nominated and shortlisted for a Green Gown Award in 2019. 


Caring Cup
Caring Cup Loose Change Collection

The Estates and Facilities Green Impact team worked with local charity, KidsBank, taking part in multiple volunteering sessions throughout the year. KidsBank are a local charity that work with healthcare professionals and social workers to provide support to families in need. The Estates and Facilities team organised monthly visits to KidsBank where they would assist with sorting through donations.