#GivingTuesday – the global day of giving. Hot on the heels of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, when we were all encouraged to buy more, Giving Tuesday encourages us to focus on giving instead.
Here are some ways you can give back to the community and the World.
1. Donate your data
We’re all getting used to donating money online and via our phones, but uMotif’s new research project allows you to donate your data. The project, 100 for Parkinson’s, aims to get at least 20,000 people to carry out some simple hand exercises once a day for 100 days, while holding their phone. A specially designed app records your data so that researchers can track the effects of different self-management techniques. Whether or not you have Parkinson’s disease, sign up and contribute directly to research into more effective treatments.
2. Sign up to a gleaning project
The gleaning network started in 2012 to coordinate volunteers, farmers and food redistribution charities in order to salvage thousands of tonnes of wasted fresh fruit and vegetables on farms every year across the UK and Europe. This then gets directed to people in need, to provide them with perfectly good and nutritious food. Since this project has started the gleaning network has managed to glean over 110 tonnes of produce, equal to over a million portions of fruit and vegetables. They have also had over 500 volunteers across 56 gleaning days, all helping to make this fantastic movement work.
Good Food in Greenwich has as one of it’s aims the mission to tackle this issue by asking people to collect any unwanted fruit and vegetables such as apples and plums, and we’ll process them into jams and chutneys. We are looking for anyone who may have a glut of these in their garden or allotment that can help us not only reduce food wastage but also provide great produce that is sourced locally. As a thank you, you will also receive a jar or 2 (or more!) of your produce.
Collection: You can bring your fruit and vegetables to Woolwich Common Community Centre or GCDA for us to collect, or we can come and collect it from you. If you would like to get involved, please get in touch at: email@example.com
3. Volunteer and learn how to food grow
The Dare to Dream Garden, located behind the Clockhouse was designed in consultation with local residents who then helped to build it in 2014.
There are 10 communal raised beds (6 large, 4 small) on the site, 2 pergolas and a trellis along the back wall which will allow a variety of plants to be grown. There are a number of newly planted fruit trees and bushes as well as mixed planting along the front of the plot alongside the Clockhouse. An informal seating area and benches allow everyone to enjoy the experience of sitting and relaxing in the garden.
Volunteers on the site are introduced to food growing skills such as seed sowing, transplanting, propogation and soil management
For further details contact firstname.lastname@example.org
4. Sign our pledge
The Good Food in Greenwich Charter is our vision for a:
- More sustainable and
- Vibrant food system in Greenwich.
Whether you’re an individual, family, small or large business, third or public sector body, we’d like to encourage you to sign the Charter and make a pledge to change one thing each year that contributes towards good food in Greenwich.
Join us and make a pledge towards a healthier, fairer, more sustainable and vibrant food system in Greenwich.
5. Share a drink in a home
Cocktails in Care Homes runs weekly evening cocktail parties for residents of care homes, their relatives and friends, and care staff. By hosting these parties, volunteers are able to socialise with residents over a drink – offering some light entertainment and much-valued company.
6. Sing and dance with people with Dementia
Organisations such as Lost Chord and Singing for the Brain which is run by the Alzheimer’s Society are unlocking the power of music to support people with dementia. If you are keen to use your vocal cords for good, find out more here and if you are local to any of the hospitals on this list, reach out to their volunteer team.
7. Take your first aid skills to the streets
Are you qualified in first aid but have never put it to action? London Ambulance Service recently rolled out the GoodSAM app, which alerts registered, first aid trained volunteers when there is an emergency nearby – and tells them where the nearest defibrillator is too. All you need is a smartphone, and skills you may never have got to use could help save a life.
8. Buy certified foods
Another way to support Good Food is by buying certified ingredients such as Fairtrade, MSC – Marine Stewardship Council, Freedom Food. These certifications assure you that the food has been produced in ways that look after the people and the planet:
- The Fairtrade stamp shows that product has been bought for a fair price from a co-operative and money is put back into the local community to build wells or schools.
- The MSC stamp means you know that fish has been caught in a sustainable way – a way that looks after future fish stocks and doesn’t damage the environment.
- The Freedom Food stamp means you know the farms have been checked by the RSPCA and that welfare standards of the animals have been assured.
9. Try to waste less foods, and recycle and compost what you can
Did you know that on average each family throws away £60 in wasted food every month?! That’s nearly £700 per year!
Wasting food is not only bad for your pocket, but disastrous for the environment as decomposing waste releases harmful greenhouse gases. Combine this with all the energy that went into making the food in the first place, and it’s the equivalent of taking one in four cars off the road if we were to just stop wasting food!
There’s loads of information about food waste, but we think the one of the best place for tips, hints and recipes is Love Food Hate Waste. Or check out our Food Waste info sheet for some handy tips.
Greenwich Council now does curbside food waste collections, and turn food waste into compost. They also pick up all of your other recycling too, so check to see before you throw anything away whether it can be recycled.
10. Using local producers and independents
Using local producers and shops is more than just good food and a great way to support the local economy; you’ll get stories, passion and real love from these guys too! Greenwich has a few markets like Blackheath Farmer’s Market, Eltham Farmer’s Market and Beresford Square Market where you can get affordable, locally grown or produced food. You’ll be helping the environment, and your local community too.
You can also check out Sustain’s Local Food Finder to access locally grown and produced food.