Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Opinion: How we’re dealing with student waste in Cardiff

Thank you @yourcardiff and @ed_walker86 for the yourcardiff opinion post on how we’re dealing with student waste issues and empowering the community. You can read the full post here

Waste issues are high on everyone’s agenda and I was disheartened to read of the recent resident anger around waste. In this post I don’t want to go into the in and out’s of the collections, I believe the new waste strategy and proposals will go a long way to assisting all residents not just students with reducing their waste and recycling more, but I would like to highlight some of the things partnership working and cardiffdigs.co.uk has been undertaking for the end of term and in preparation for the new academic year and how people in Cardiff can help.

Get it Out for Cardiff, now in its seventh year, is the Keep Cardiff Tidy, Cardiff Council initiative in association with Cardiff University, UWIC and Glamorgan University and Unions which helps Students to clear out their rubbish at the end of the academic year. The aim is to re-use and recycle as much of it as possible

The 2010 campaign saw 225 tonnes of waste and unwanted items collected, with over 62 tonnes recycled and over six tonnes re-used by students donating them in charity collections.

Residents of Cathays, Roath and Gabalfa will have extra rubbish and recycling collections on three Saturdays in June and July:

-Sat 18th June

-Sat 25th June

-Sat 2nd July

This scheme is open to all residents and we are putting a real focus on items that can be re-used by charities, there are ‘Green Zone’ collection points in Cardiff University, UWIC, Liberty Living and Victoria Hall student halls. Green Zones situated in the main reception area of Cardiff Students Union, in UWIC and the Atrium

Keep an eye out for the Raise and Give (RAG) Milk Float - they're coming to Cathays and Roath over the weekend of 11th & 12th June to collect your items

You can read about the success of the milk float here

Here's a list of the items we are collecting for re-use this year

-British Heart Foundation: Small electrical items such as kettles, toasters, printers, mobile phones, irons etc

-Fareshare: In date, un-opened foods (not fresh) eg. tins, packets etc

-Barnardos: Clothes, belts, shoes and bags. No duvets though please.

-Cardiff Council/ Media Bank: Books including textbooks, DVDs, CDs and tapes

-Kitchen bric-a-brac such as utensils and cutlery is being collected for (Raise And Give) (RAG) for resale at the Union this September.

Any items stored over the summer are being kept at Cardiff Self Storage who have kindly supported GIOFC 2011 by supplying a storage container.

We all appreciate that students are a transitory population and each year we must make sure that we educate at the start of each academic year. We have various ways of getting out the message, we attend freshers fayres, use innovative media like podcasts and videos, work closely with the universities and unions on communications through mailing lists, what’s on guides, social media and websites, and use Unity news as your opportunity to find out about how the universities and student unions of Cardiff engage the community. The latest issue and past issues are now live at http://cardiffdigs.co.uk/unity.htm

But we have also been concentrating on:

Environmental champions scheme In preparation for the start of the academic year Waste management, cardiffdigs.co.uk, Cardiff Students Union and Student Volunteering Cardiff (SVC) are coming together to recruit volunteers to look at sustainability issues. We will be working with two coordinators and volunteers who will adopt a street or area to help raise the education and awareness of waste responsibilities as well as broader sustainability issues.

Tidy Text – this is an amazing and innovative initiative. A free text reminds you when recycling/waste collected; text ‘Tidy' with house number and postcode to 60066 for your FREE reminder of waste and recycling collection days. Waste management and the Keep Cardiff Tidy group are looking into ways of sharing data on students so that they are automatically signed up for the service.

Cardiff’s student plan for the future

Thinking globally but acting locally was the key message at an event to revise our Cardiff Student Community Plan. Professor Ken Peattie from Cardiff University’s Sustainable Places Research Institute addressed delegates at the Sustainability and the Environment – Student Community Action Plan event to revise the Plan, outlining how thinking globally can help have an impact locally.

Partnership And Communities Together (PACT) chairs from student wards were among 45 delegates and partners who gave valuable feedback and ideas at the workshops; Green Travel (including travel and wellbeing), Recycling and Waste Management and Housing and Energy Efficiency

The Plan has been developed in partnership with Cardiff, UWIC, and Glamorgan universities and Cardiff Council to address a wide range of local issues. It contains a number of key actions that will seek to address the needs of Cardiff’s student population and its impact on the local community.

Commenting on the plan, Councillor Judith Woodman, Cardiff Council Deputy Leader for Communities said: “I would like to thank all those who have been involved in developing this important action plan. The document will play a critical role in sustaining partnership working between the Council, local universities and our stakeholders in order to both maintain Cardiff’s success as a university city and to improve the quality of life of students and residents alike.”

And finally I would like to appeal for your help through the 'You're In, Now What' poster

You're In. Now What?

Last year we created the free poster 'You're in. Now what?' to support students in the private rented sector.

It provides advice and assistance on the four main issues that concern students: Neighbour relations including noise and parking, waste and recycling responsibilities, security advice and health and safety.

This facilitates an easier, safer, greener transition for students into the private rented sector and into the community with heightened awareness of social responsibilities.

I am currently updating this poster and intend a larger print run which would enable me to again offer free copies of the poster. We are working to empower the community so I am able to offer the poster out to members of the community to display and distribute to their new student neighbours to help them during the start of term; an often difficult and contentious time.

I will be presenting the poster for distribution around PACT meetings and other community channels. I have also been writing to my contacts through letting agents and landlords and am pleased to say that all letting agents who are an accredited ALMA agent have taken up this opportunity along with many others and Douglas Haig and the Landlords Forum are again very supportive.

My appeal is to any landlord, letting agents and community members to get in touch (cardiffdigs@gmail.com) if they are interested in receiving this information which may assist their neighbours, company, clients and tenants. I will send posters to them to distribute and display throughout their properties, give them out during property inspections, distribute at key exchange or, give to new student neighbours. Please contact me with the number of copies that you require and a delivery address.

Come September, the start of term is often the first time many students move out of halls or home and take on such a wide range of responsibilities – it can be very daunting.

Everyone can help with this transition and get the message of community out to those who need help and education. We encourage students to introduce themselves to their neighbours, and to respect the fact that not everyone works to a student calendar. I would appeal to the community that the warmer the welcome, the greater the ownership and respect we will secure from the newcomers. So if you can offer this information poster to your new neighbours, introduce yourself and make them feel a welcome part of the community we can hopefully contribute to a more sustainable community with heightened social awareness.

'You're in. Now what?' is produced and supported in association with http://www.cardiffdigs.co.uk/ a one stop website for student housing and living needs containing useful information and practical tips about living and studying in Cardiff.

If you would like to receive copies of the poster in preparation for September then please get in contact.

Kieran McCann is Cardiff council's student liaison officer and works in partnership with Cardiff, UWIC and Glamorgan universities. Email him cardiffdigs@gmail.com


Unknown said...

the students of Cardiff, they thinks globally and acting locally , and all students are have many plans for their future especially Cardiff students.

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Unknown said...

Thank you for taking the time to publish this information very useful! I've been looking for books of this nature for a way too long. I'm just glad that I found yours. Looking forward for your next post. Thanks :)

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fliplukas said...

after seventh year, is the Keep Cardiff Tidy usually most amazing verities for student due to deals from waste. thanks for bring this info post.

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