Waste Savvy Staffs

Further details about the Waste Savvy Staffs programme

Thanks for showing an interest in being a volunteer. Here's some further info about the role.
What is Waste Savvy Staffs?
Waste Savvy Staffs is a council campaign to reduce waste in Staffordshire and Garden Organic has been contracted to recruit and train volunteers to raise awareness of this topic. The core areas of the Waste Savvy Staffs campaign are the principles of reduce, reuse and recycle, especially composting, recycling and reducing food waste, as well as raising awareness of other sustainable waste schemes like real nappies and Repair Cafes.
Who is Garden Organic?
Contracted to deliver the volunteer element of the campaign by Staffordshire County Council, Garden Organic is the UK's leading organic growing charity. Dedicated to promoting organic gardening in homes, communities and schools, and advancing organic growing through research, we use innovation & inspiration to get more people growing organically. Our community projects include Master Composters, Master Gardeners, Food Buddies, Growing Buddies and, more recently, Waste Reduction Volunteers.
What would I need to do as a volunteer?
It's completely up to you. We would never force anyone to do something that makes them feel uncomfortable. Volunteers can raise awareness through stands at events, talks, workshops and supporting schools, colleges and universities, but they can also just talk to friends, family, neighbours and work colleagues or share Facebook posts in their networks. Anything that helps spread the key messages of waste reduction is a help. The only thing we ask is that you record how many hours you spent volunteering and how many people you engaged with on our Better Impact volunteering website or app.
How much volunteering would I need to do?
We only ask for about 15-30 hours of volunteering a year. That's like helping out on a public stand at an event once every couple of months, having 90 ten minute conversations with people about reducing waste, giving a talk in person or via Zoom once a month or spending an hour a month sharing posts and engaging with people on Facebook. Many volunteers count engagement that they are already doing or build their volunteering into their work, for example if you work in an environment where you engage with lots of people, you might find it very easy to give out recycling leaflets, signpost people to the appropriate website or give someone some basic tips on getting started with composting.
What if end up not volunteering or change my mind?
We understand that people change their mind or, more likely, that circumstances change and they can no longer volunteer. We completely understand and appreciate that everyone's free time is precious. If you're having a difficult time, you can take a backseat for a period of time, and you can always walk away from the programme at any time. The only thing we ask is that you only join the programme if you genuinely feel you can give the time required.
Do I need any particular experience?
Volunteers do not need to have had any prior experience of waste or public engagement, but we would expect you to have some knowledge and interest in either composting, reducing food waste at home and recycling.
What benefits do I receive as a volunteer?
As a volunteer, you will be provided with free training on recycling, food waste reduction and composting in particular, but will also be made aware of other sustainable waste schemes like repair cafes, real nappies and community fridges.
What support will I receive in my volunteer role?
The campaign has a dedicated coordinator who will recruit, train and keep in contact with all the volunteers, supporting them to carry out their role. As well as additional in-service training, the coordinator will also arrange social meetings to build relationships and maintain volunteer engagement. He/she will make contacts in the community and arrange many of the events, talks and workshops, but these kind of volunteer campaigns are far more effective when volunteers start arranging their own events and talks too. The coordinator will also provide resources for volunteers to use, from leaflets, games and activities to tables, chairs, tablecloths and gazebos if required.
Will it cost me anything to volunteer?
You will not be out of pocket for anything you do when volunteering for the campaign. All travel and parking expenses can be reimbursed. If you are at an event all day, reasonable food and drink expenses can also be claimed.
Where can I read more about the project and waste in Staffordshire?
For more information on the project and reducing waste, go to https://www.staffordshire.gov.uk/wastesavvy
To keep up to date with events and waste reduction information from the County Council, follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/wastesavvystaffs
What do I do next?
Complete the application here online or if you're unsure or have any questions please do email rwhitehouse@gardenorganic.org.uk.
I look forward to hearing from you and hopefully working with you in the very near future.
Rob Whitehouse
Waste Savvy Staffs Volunteer Project Coordinator