Awards announced for Green Impact Students’ Unions
Through participating in Green Impact Students’ Unions (GISU), SUs demonstrate how they continue to lead on sustainability initiatives.
35 Students’ Unions participated in the programme this year and showed great ambition and commitment for sustainability, with an impressive 21 SUs (60% of participating SUs) awarded ‘Excellent’.
Campaigns which aim to lobby institutions to divest from fossils and declare Climate Emergencies continue to be popular. The curriculum has also been a significant focus again this year, with an increasing number of SUs inducting course/student reps on sustainability, and some other campaigns have focused on period poverty, eco-friendly menstruation products and period inclusivity.
Students’ Unions have also shown how they have adapted to the digital environment by continuing to virtually engage students on sustainability. For example, AUBSU have run Tech for Trees promoting platforms that are supporting tree planting whilst the SU are not able to; Keele SU ran 'Race Around The World' where 178 staff and students travelled on foot, in a wheelchair, by bike, or in water, covering over 94,000km in 176 days virtually exploring sustainability initiatives and environmental/social challenges in 29 destinations across the world; and UWSTD Union ran the ‘Small Plant Project’ where students could get a free delivery of soil and seeds to grow plants, supporting the biodiversity and student mental and physical wellbeing.
Other SUs have progressed sustainability by focusing their time on developing strategies and policies, for example City of Glasgow College SA have created a new environmental policy that will ensure every decision made at the SA involves an environmental risk assessment.
It was great to have 20 participants at the virtual GISU Support and Networking Day in December and over 150 staff and officers from participating students’ unions join SOS-UK led GISU webinars this year which focused on the topics of, curriculum change and course reps; student-led growing projects; and carbon targets, and all webinars included best practice being shared from a range of SUs.
We are also delighted to announce the winners of the GISU Special Awards
· Highest Scoring – The Students’ Union at UWE (462 points)
The sustainability committee led a campaign called Let’s Talk Trash, exploring how waste can be reduced across five different areas: food, fashion, recycling, plastic, and zero-waste living. Lots of great activities were ran through social media to engage students and support learning for sustainability.
· Highest Scoring from the Nations – Undeb Bangor (416 points)
Just some of the things that the SU ran this year, included a ‘Period Poverty and Planet Friendly Period’ campaign, the ‘Walk and Talk’ project for health and wellbeing and activities focusing on sustainable gardening.
· Most Improved – City University of London Students’ Union and City of Glasgow College Students’ Association.
We will separately be announcing the Student Leadership Awards winner very soon!
Congratulations once again to all SUs that participated in GISU this year and are bringing about some impressive outcomes for sustainability! To find out what is includedin the full GISU offering, view our GISU 2021-22 offering guidance or get in contact via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Full list of GISU awards 2020-21
Aberdeen University Students Association - Good
Arts University Bournemouth Students' Union - Excellent
Aston Students' Union - Excellent
Bournemouth and Poole College Students' Union - Very Good
Bucks Students Union - Excellent
Chester Students' Union - Good
City of Glasgow College Students' Association - Excellent
City, University of London Students' Union - Excellent
Coventry University Students' Union - Very Good
Glasgow Caledonian University Students' Union - Excellent
Greenwich Students’ Union - Working Towards
Hertfordshire Students' Union - Good
Keele Students' Union - Excellent
Lancaster - Good
Leeds Arts Union - Excellent
Leeds Trinity Students' Union - Excellent
Leeds University Union - Excellent
Liverpool Guild of Students - Excellent
Liverpool John Moores Students' Union - Very Good
Queen Mary University of London Students' Union - Excellent
Reading University Students' Union - Very Good
Staffordshire University Students' Union - Excellent
Student's Union at Bournemouth University - Excellent
The Students' Union at UWE - Excellent
University of Wales Trinity Saint David Students' Union - Very Good
UCA Students' Union - Excellent
Ulster University Students' Union - Good
Undeb Bangor - Excellent
Union of Kingston Students - Good
University of Birmingham Guild of Students - Excellent
University of Westminster Students' Union - Excellent
Worcester Students' Union - Excellent
Wrexham Glyndwr Students' Union - Excellent