Throughout the academic year 2017-18, Richmond upon Thames College (RuTC) is working with Friends of the Earth and the National Union of Students (NUS) offering students the opportunity to study a Level 3 Award in Community Campaigning as an additional qualification. The six students from RuTC who were selected for this course will gain eight additional UCAS points, which will benefit their personal statements for university and provide additional hands-on experience for future careers.
Daniel Sudworth who is studying the Community Campaigning programme alongside his A Levels in Psychology, Government and Politics and History, says; “I joined this group for two reasons; firstly because I think the environment is an important issue and something needs to be done, and it may as well start at a local level. Secondly, it seemed like a fun and different experience.”
During the Autumn term, RuTC students voted on the environmental issue that means the most to them and the Community Campaigning students have taken the winning vote of ‘waste’ as the issue to focus on. Their aim over the coming year will be to try creating a community campaign to reduce waste at RuTC. Inspired by the BBC's Blue Planet 2 and Sky’s Ocean Rescue, the team will put their focus on plastic. They have met with the college’s Catering and Estates departments and aim to take their campaign to the Principal to action their plan across the college.
RuTC is one of four London colleges taking part in the community campaigning project, called ‘My World, My Home’. Students have attended a training session held by Friends of the Earth at the Woodberry Wetlands Centre in Hackney, North London, with 25 other students from the other London colleges.
The training provided the students with the knowledge and skills to plan and implement their own campaign. The session involved role-playing to sharpen negotiating skills and storytelling to help them work towards the Award. Isaac Skrzypczyk who is studying A Levels in Philosophy, Psychology and Sociology says; “We are hoping to highlight the importance of recycling and to reduce the use of single plastic at RuTC.”