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Sustainability Volunteering 

There are many opportunities to become involved in sustainability projects and help make a difference at a local to global level. There is a wide variety of sustainability volunteering opportunities at campus, course or departmental level and the Students’ Union also offers volunteering opportunities.

You may also be interested in engagement with some of the external local and regional sustainability organisations with which the University has developed a relationship.

Students can earn a Gloucestershire Employability Award through sustainability volunteering activities, which can help enhance your future employment prospects. We are always looking for new and exciting sustainability project ideas and would welcome any suggestions that you may have. A guide to creating your own volunteering opportunity or event can be found here.

The Cheltenham Chilli Company

The University and the Sustainability Team are collaborating with the Student Union to promote their latest Green Impact project - The Cheltenham Chilli Company. This will provide students with an opportunity to enhance their sustainability, employability and entrepreneurial skills through running a social enterprise company that grows and sells chillis and chilli products.

The project has had excellent reviews from the NUS assessors with comments such as:

‘This is an absolutely outstanding project, and one that can be used to inspire other union’s country-wide. The project’s message- to encourage and promote both local produce and biodiversity- is clear throughout, and its opportunities for employability and its strong links with local community groups, local institutions, as well as the local public in general are exemplary.... I can’t fault a single aspect, and am very much looking forward to hearing how the project continues to develop!’  - Charlotte Taylor

‘I am very impressed with this ambitious project and how the union has worked with the university and various stakeholders to make it happen. The union seems very committed in making the project a resounding success and has involved students at various parts of the journey thus giving them opportunity to develop their skills. Looking forward to tasting some of the produce’ – Joanna Romanowicz

For more information on the project and how to volunteer visit the project blog or contact Laura Ballard, SU Opportunities Manager -


For further information on any topic or to suggest a project please contact Meg Baker.

Below is a list of projects you can get involved with.

Want to lend a helping hand?
Want to become a ‘Sustainability St*r’?

Sustainability St*rs are student volunteers who help to make a difference by volunteering on a range of projects run by the University’s Sustainability Team. You can help with the Big Green Broom project re-using goods from student halls or you can volunteer as a Sustainability Events Assistant and gain valuable experience organising events. There are also opportunities to volunteer on community and social projects, and energy saving and recycling projects in the student halls of residence.  

Volunteering Opportunities at the University


For more information contact Meg Baker

Sustainability Stars logo

I am the Change
The NUS has launched 'I Am The Change' to help students make positive changes at their University or College. Check out the video via this web-link to see what kind of change you could launch at UoG...

Sustainability Volunteering NUS I am the change image

The Edible Garden

If you live, study or work in St Pauls then you're very welcome to join in the Edible Garden Project. This is a community garden project in the heart of St Pauls, Cheltenham.




Student Union Allotment

The SU Allotment is based on two sites: one at Midwinter allotment site in Cheltenham and one at Park Campus, near Cornerways Building. Students can grow their own vegetables and new members are always welcome. There are plans to use the allotment as the cornerstone of an exicitng new student led social enterpirse venture growing chillis - teaching valuable sustainabiltiy and employability skills.

For more information contact the SU Opportunities Manager, Tom Newman. Updates will be posted ont the SU Opportunities page in due course.



Energy Saving Campaigns

There are exciting plans around energy saving campaigns for students, especially for students living in halls both on and off campus. If you wish to be involved please contact Sustainability Officer, Paul Thomas.




Events and Campaigns

Eco Lifestyles Events

The Sustainability Team organised a series of events on all campuses in over past years to create an informal opportunity for students and staff to engage practically with sustainable living issues, such as clothing, personal energy use, transport and food sourcing. These events were inter-active drop-in lunchtime sessions for students and staff using local experts in sustainable living who shared their knowledge and provided practical guidance in ‘how to’ live more sustainably.

This ties in with the UoG Carbon Strategy’s aim to reduce the carbon footprint of the University by 40% by 2020 from 2005 levels, and with other events happening around the University, such as the student Blackout event at Oxstalls campus and the Chaplaincy events planned for Lent this March.



Blackout Fayre and Event

The Blackout Fayre and Event was held on 2nd March 2012 at Oxstalls Campus on Personal Energy Use. There were members of the local Energy group from Cheltenham Transition Town who helped staff and students to work out their personal carbon footprint and find out the best and quickest ways to reduce it and save energy.

The events management students’ Blackout Event in the evening was a free event supported by the SU and was well attended by the students who live at Oxstalls Campus. Students organised for a fire dancer as well as some acoustic music for the evening's entertainment.




Next Cycle Campaign meetings

The Cheltenham Cyclist
The Cheltenham Cycle Campaign (CCC) produces a bi-annual news magazine about cycling in Cheltenham and this is emailed to BUG members. If you would like to be on the mailing list, please email Richard Harper.

Bike Purchase
The university can assist staff in the purchase of bicycles.
See here for details.

Second hand bikes
Second hand bikes are available from The Gloucestershire Bike Project, a local social enterprise that refurbishes unwanted bikes. The Project is always looking for donations too so if you want a bike or own one that you no longer need then get in touch via email or call 01452 690979.


Local bike shops
Gloucestershire County Council has a list of local bike shops

Cheltenham & Gloucester Cycle Maps
The latest Cheltenham Cycle Map should be available from campus reception desks. Copies can also be obtained from the Council Offices and from most local bike shops.

Students' Union Volunteering Opportunities

To find out how to get involved with volunteering projects run by the University's Students' Union, check out their Facebook page  

SU Volunteering logo
External Volunteering Opportunities


Vision 21 (Gloucestershire)

Staff and students are working voluntarily with Vision 21, a local sustainable development charity, to establish a community supported agriculture project in Cheltenham. It is hoped that this will be worked on by the local community with local food grown to feed local families. Anyone who is interested in this project please see details on the Vision 21 website.

Global Footsteps - Volunteering Opportunities

Global Footsteps is a Cheltenham-based charity, whose mission is to be a connecting force between grassroots communities around the world to build resilience and resourcefulness. We believe in caring for our planet and each other, friendship, partnership, cooperation, respect for diversity and empowerment of individuals.

We are looking for committed volunteers to work in our fair trade shop and vegetarian café in the town centre. Shifts are generally 4 hours long, weekdays or weekends.  You can work one or more shifts.  We also have opportunities for volunteers to assist with office work, DIY work, fundraising and other tasks associated with running a charity.

Come and share the experience with like-minded people whilst gaining useful work experience and learning new skills. If you are interested please email or visit and complete the ‘Apply to Volunteer’ form.

Global Footsteps logo

Horsbere Brook Project

The purpose of this project is to clean up Horsbere Brook and make it a suitable area for people to walk and explore the wildlife.


Brockworth Parish Council logo

Cotswold Conservation Board

The Cotswolds Conservation Board has two placements available for a minimum of 6 months starting in June 2012. The Board is looking for enthusiastic, capable and well-organised students to deliver two roles: one is a research project and one is based around Sustainable Tourism.


Cotswolds AONB logo

Please click here to view 'Make A Difference' The University's Student Volunteering Newsletter.

If you're interested in sustainability matters and want to find out more about getting involved, starting something new or just want to find out more please contact Meg Baker, co-ordinator of partnerships and engagement for sustainability

University of Gloucestershire, The Park, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, GL50 2RH. Telephone +44 (0)844 8010001.