Thinking Big - You Can Make a Difference!
Bethia: I spent some time in hospital this week with my oldest son. We have all learnt more about the value of our NHS through the coronavirus pandemic and I have nothing but praise for it after this week. It made me think about what its existence says about our society as a whole. The NHS started in 1948 - essentially, as a society we agreed and decided that healthcare should be free for anyone and everyone. What a great moment that was! It’s encouraging - we are capable of ‘great moments’... of great movement and ideas. We are capable of deciding as a society that this is what we value and therefore this is what we will create into being.
At GROWbox, we talk a lot about individual actions that we can take towards combating the climate crisis but they go hand in hand with societal, big-scale change. They aren’t enough without cultural shifts and government action. The NHS is a reason to hope - we have done it in the past. We can do it again!
VOTE: Sometimes you have to scroll a long way down to find the environmental ideas of a political party sadly. Our votes are our voice and our chance to make politicians see what we care most about. Use your MP to represent you - let him or her know what you care about and find out what he or she is doing about it.
SUPPORT: Woman’s Hour has announced that this year’s Power List will focus on the planet and recognise women in society who are making a difference when it comes to the environment. This is fantastic as it’s bringing environmentalists into view and celebrating the large scale movements and actions that are working to shift us in the right direction.
BE RESPONSIBLE CONSUMERS: Our wallets have immense power. There are more and more people who are switching to companies like Bulb or Ecotricity who supply green energy (you can buy vegan electricity now!), there are more people who are asking questions about how our goods are made and dealt with as waste. It’s a numbers game and as more of us buy in this direction, so companies will respond and provide more on the market. Like it, or hate it, that’s how it works!
My son got great care and is running around again. Wouldn’t it be great if we provided better service for the health of the natural world too.
Jess: Hear hear! Well said Bethia, and very glad that your son is home and well.
It’s true, these days, with the power of social media, the people have a voice. Movements such as #metoo and #blacklivesmatter are just the tip of the iceberg of the masses making a difference. This week plastic straws, stirrers and cotton buds have been made illegal - consumers have the power, so choose carefully where your money goes, we’re paying for what we want our future to look like! Let’s not make nature pay the price for our actions.
There are many ways that we can create community power. Not everyone adjusts easily to change, but let’s make small steps in the right direction - it’s for the health of our beautiful planet after all! These mindset shifts may be easier than you might think:
SHOP THOUGHTFULLY: Think carefully about what you are buying.
Do you need it? Is your money supporting a good place? Can you buy second hand? How is it packaged? How is it shipped? Where is it made?
TAKE ACTION: Give to action groups.
Are there groups doing good things to help planet and people (local, regional, national or even international)? Can you give them time, money or encouragement?
IMPROVE: Take a positive attitude to change and get others on board too.
Are there a few of you that care? Do something! Seek help and support and do your research - put your thoughts into actions!
GROWnings is a weekly blog conversation by ‘Planet & People’ to reflect our values and behaviours and encourage open conversation on topical issues.
GROWbox is an educational resource and subscription box providing personalised learning resources engaging children in planet and people. The activities focus on getting in touch with nature and encouraging a desire to protect it, promoting better mental and physical wellbeing, allowing space for creativity and connectivity.