Stockton-On-Tees Great Big Green Week
In April I curiously responded to an email invitation from The Climate Coalition (The Climate Coalition) to attend their online webinars: Introduction to Great Big Green Week: What’s it All About? and How to Organise a Great Big Green Week in Your Area. I learnt much and was inspired by The Climate Coalition’s vision to “celebrate how communities are taking action to tackle climate change and protect green spaces, and encourage others to get involved too.” I felt encouraged into action to celebrate local activity, raise the profile of climate change and show why it is relevant to our community and local decision makers.
Reflecting on their aims and objectives I could see potential for Stockton-On-Tees to host an event (at least 30 activities throughout the period of 18-26 September 2021). With many passionate grassroots groups, VCSE, Public and Private sector organisations doing incredible work around the green agenda locally, I thought it will be a great opportunity to join together to showcase, celebrate, and engage with our MPs and offer awareness and action to our community ahead of COP26.
I quickly contacted like minded groups (Stockton Borough Council, Cultivate Tees Valley, Climate Action North East, Stockton Borough Fairtrade Partnership and Stockton Baptist Church) to gauge their interest in partnering. Through Cultivate Tees Valley we submitted a funding application in May to the Great Big Green Week (GBGW) to support management, co-ordination and delivery of our Borough-wide event. We are grateful to the GBGW for their financial assistance, helpful training, support and advice from others who have previously run similar festivals.
Now more partner organisations are being approached to join to make this a reality. After four meetings it’s starting to build momentum with support from many including Tees Valley Nature Partnership and Thirteen Group. I’m encouraged to see partners across the sectors coming together to collaborate and think creatively how to engage our community in September.
A logo design competition is open to all Primary schools across Stockton-On-Tees and an invitation to partner has gone out to all schools. Our two local MPs have been approached and we’re hoping to invite the TVCA Mayor. Partners are starting to share their aspirations and activities that include for example allotment tours, market stalls, walks, bike rides, litter picks, trainings and talks, school assemblies and lessons, recycling centre tours etc.
When attending the People’s Powerhouse Listening Event on Wednesday 23rd of June, in collaboration with Groundwork UK, on a ‘Greener, Fairer North’, I learnt about NEECCo and immediately signed up as an individual!
We are excited to be hosting the Stockton-On-Tees Great Big Green Week (SOTGBGW) event and to play a part in contributing to NEECCo’s ambition of becoming England’s Greenest Region!
If you are based in Stockton-On-Tees and would like to partner with us please contact the Co-ordinator Katharine Lam via email: SOTGBGW@outlook.com or if you would like to run your own local Great Big Green Week activity or event I encourage you to sign up here: greatbiggreenweek.com