Tag Archives: community

Wimbledon 2015

As the nation watched with bated breath we seen Novak Djokovic beat seven time champion Roger Federer to win the men’s singles title while Serena Williams was the winner of the women’s singles title at this year’s Wimbledon tournament.

The tournament had many twists and turns that resulted in Dustin Brown taking out Rafa Nadal, Murray Mania sweeping the nation, Roger Federer refusing to age and Heather Watson taking the tournament by storm.

With such an established and elite event we wondered how sustainable is the All England Lawn Tennis Club?


The organisers of Wimbledon are keen on recycling and the sustainability of the event. For all recyclable materials, they are sorted out through a Material Recovery Facility with non- recyclable materials being processed at an Energy from Waste facility. This means that they achieve an overall reduction from landfill of around 95%. This has also been made possible with the introduction of a two-streamed waste bin system which has seen a recycling rise to 53% of all waste.

Wimbledon also has the responsibility to take care of the local community who are affected when the event is being held. The Wimbledon Foundation was created to fund charities, fix roads, flowers and statues that may be damaged during The Championship. This also directly involves developing effective transport solutions during the tournament which will reflect the priorities of the club, its neighbours and those visiting during The Championships.

The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club pledges to “take into account the environmental impact of everything it does and will strive to reduce direct and indirect resource consumption and to reduce more generally its impact on the environment”.  The Championship has committed to minimise fossil fuel use as much as possible, and to use only bio-friendly gases, with the key objective of reducing carbon emissions from the grounds.

We all know that Wimbledon is famous for their Pimms as well as strawberries and cream. The strawberries and cream are locally sourced from within a hundred miles; nearly all of the strawberries come from Kent and are picked at 5.30am that morning. In total 28,000kg of strawberries are consumed during the fortnight with more than 7,000 litres of cream.

With the environmental care being well managed it came to our surprise of how the 54,200 tennis balls get to centre court. The Slazenger tennis balls travel over 50,000 miles, fly between 11 countries and across four continents to then arrive at centre court. Although this may be more cost effective for Slazenger to produce the vast amount of tennis balls needed, it does create a vast amount of footprint. This shows that there is failing to ensure manufacturers pay the true cost of their environmental impact which can lead to an extraordinary supply chain in a globalised world.  It may not be practical for the tennis balls to go on a round the world trip but this has more to do with the suppliers rather than Wimbledon.

Here’s 50 things that were learned about Wimbledon over the last two weeks: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/tennis/wimbledon/11735538/Wimbledon-2015-50-things-we-learned.html


Another amazing year, great atmosphere and emotional experience for us all!

Until next year…



We Just Can’t Contain Ourselves: Container planting project coming alive at the community gardens

Gardening in Containers: A Quick Guide

It is widely agreed that gardening brings many benefits, both physical and emotional. One simple but highly effective way in which more people can get these benefits is by growing plants in containers. As part of their container planting project, SAUWS Environment have available a number of windowsill troughs. They are available free of charge to interested staff and students- so why not consider applying for one (details below). All you need to do is come along to one of our sessions in the community garden on your campus, make up your container with our help and take it away, for FREE!

garden container

There are many reasons why you might want to consider starting a container garden. For example, it enables:

  • Plants to be brought indoors- such as workplaces and residencies.
  • People who do not have a garden to enjoy gardening.
  • People with restricted mobility to participate in gardening.
  • People who are housebound (through mental or physical ill health) can benefit from looking at and tending to plants.

You can grow a range of plants in containers- including vegetables for use the kitchen. Many types of containers can be used to grow plants in. Containers can be placed anywhere- but will thrive on bright, warm window ledges.

Here are some tips to help you get started with a container garden:

  • Choose a roomy container.
  • Don’t use containers made from treated wood.
  • Make sure the container has drainage holes in it.
  • Be careful with watering. Make sure water reaches all of the soil in the container (allow the water to run through the container and out of the drainage holes at the bottom).
  • Keep an eye on the water content of the soil in the container and don’t let them get too much rain. Top Tip: soil should be moist (test this using your finger).
  • Cover containers (and the plants) in the winter months.
  • Add your preferred fertiliser to the soil. Follow with more liquid fertiliser as growing continues.
  • Make sure tall plants are well supported in the pot.
  • Carry out planting at the same time you would for plants growing in the ground.
  • Remember to weed the plants as required- and look out for insects or other types of pests.

For information on the best types of plants (including vegetables) to grow in containers:

You can find general information on growing plants in containers at:

If you would like to find out more about obtaining a free window-still trough, contact Natalie.McCall@SAUWS.org.uk with the heading CONTAINER PROJECT

Garden sessions run:

Sessions will run:

Hamilton Campus – Tues 12-3pm

Ayr Campus – Thurs 11-4pm

Paisley Campus – Wed & Fri 12-2

Why Volunteer? 5 Reasons to start volunteering

Have you ever asked yourself why people volunteer?

Whatever background you come from or whatever skill set you possess,there is without doubt a list of benefits for volunteering.

How many times have you found a job advert read “must have work experience” in the description and think, how can I have experience when I have only just finished my degree? Similarly, how many times have you thought you would like to develop skills and gain experience in a different area?

Volunteering benefits range well beyond enhancing each individual’s CV, for volunteering can boast a greater impact on the individual’s health and well being as well as that of the community around them. If you have contemplated getting involved, maybe this blog post and these reasons will be that inspiration you need. You never know, it could change your life forever.

work experience

  1. Work Experience and skills development

In the current job market it is becoming more and more important to have work experience on your CV. Leaving University with an Honours Degree alone does not cut it anymore. It is up to you, the individual, to gain experience, and volunteering is an excellent way to do so. Ask yourself, can you find time around your studies to do a few hours a week? Doing something related to the area you want to work in can be beneficial. That does not mean to say doing something different in order to develop other skills is out the question. Knowledge is power, experience is vital!


  1. Personal Development

While work experience is vital in employment, personal skills are equally important. We have all heard the phrases countless times,”I’m too shy to …….” or “I don’t have the confidence to …….” Many of us have thought it ourselves. Like most other things in life, the best way of learning is doing. Volunteering often offers a great chance to get out there and develop communication and team working skills. Before you know it, you can be out of your comfort zone, flourishing in a new found confidence.


  1. Creating Positive Change

Not all volunteering needs to be work related. Is there anything you are passionate about? Volunteering offers you that opportunity to go out and make that positive change. This can be as simple as gathering signatures on a petition for a local charity or raising awareness of recycling in your community. Being a part of something that you truly believe in will, without doubt, generate a sense of satisfaction and benefit your mental well-being.

5 ways JPEG

  1. Mental Health and Well-being

Over the last two sections we have touched on making positive change and developing personal skills. These both contribute to better mental health and have been shown to help with depression. In today’s culture, many of us live stressful lives. It can be easy for work or studies to get on top of us. Taking that time bit of time out from stress can be exactly what the brain needs to recharge.


  1. Being a happier person!

A survey carried out by the National Volunteering Network showed that 98% of people taking part in a survey said that volunteering made them a happier person. Many factors contribute to this. For the vast majority of human beings, helping other people makes them happy. Throw that in with personal development, new achievements, positive changes, enhanced mental well-being and a great CV. What is there not to be happy about?

From this point it is up to you. Decide what you want to take from volunteering. Is it to bolster your CV? Make a difference in the local community? Or just to get out and mix with new people? There are many organisations out there that will welcome your time and help. Volunteer Scotland’s website offers more information on volunteering.

SAUWS Environment offer volunteering placements for students of the University of the West of Scotland.  Get involved! All opportunities are advertised on the UWS jobs page and the SAUWS website. Alternatively, if you are keen to volunteer and think you have a skill to bring to the table, contact us at sustainability@sauws.org.uk.