Improving sustainability in Wareham

With the effects of climate change becoming more apparent, Sustainable Wareham was formed in April last year to encourage residents to be more environmentally friendly. The group has received a grant from our Environment Fund 2022 to support their activities.

We spoke with Paula Edwards, who is a volunteer at Sustainable Wareham, to find out more.

Why was the group started?

Wareham didn’t have a group highlighting the challenges of climate change. As its effects became more apparent, we felt the town needed a coordinated approach to help people act more sustainably. We currently have 123 members who are helping us achieve this!

What is the aim of the group?

Sustainable Wareham aims to work in partnership with local groups, our town and county councils, and individuals to identify areas where we could lessen our impact on the planet by living more sustainably.

How does Sustainable Wareham support the environment

There was very little focus on sustainability before the group started so it has been a steep learning curve. Some of our key projects so far include producing leaflets on how and where to recycle materials not accepted in our roadside recycle collections, while also setting up collection points for other unwanted items.

We have also assisted with a monthly street litter collection, organised tree planting in public places and set up a solar panel scheme to allow homeowners to purchase a solar installation at a significant discount.

Sustainable Wareham Charity Worker

How will you use our funding?

The grant will be used to hold educational activities for residents, tourists and local organisations. It will also be used to carry out tree planting and fostering workshops.

The expected outcomes are:

  • to improve environmental sustainability in our area
  • to have a positive impact on the local environment
  • to educate local people about supporting the environment.

What do you aim to achieve through your educational activities?

Our goal is to teach people to look after our natural resources, as they are precious and finite. We also want to encourage people to work together to find solutions for unhelpful practices. We have a wonderful local environment which is enjoyed by lots of people, so we need to take practical action quickly.