Sustainability Rep for the Students' Union, Amber Hayward, shares her guide for a more conscious student kitchen.
I’m the Sustainability Rep for the Students' Union here at Bath Spa. I joined the University two years ago as a part-time MA Environmental Humanities student after having completed my undergraduate degree in Anthropology at Sussex University.
While at Sussex I co-founded the Ecosia on Campus campaign movement, now a global environmental network of students, which I've also brought to Bath Spa. When I started here, I wanted to start up something new to inspire students to be more environmentally conscious. I set up a campaign called Simple Swaps, sharing sustainability tips and advice, and running monthly clothes swaps and online campaigns.
When I was elected to be the Sustainability Rep, I expanded Simple Swaps to underpin my role. This year I've run a mixture of week-long focus campaigns, such as Sustainable Fashion Week, Sustainable Eating Week and Environmenstrual Week, and some long-term campaigns such as working towards getting Ecosia (the eco-friendly search engine) set as the default on all campus computers, as well as being involved with other sustainability work within the Students' Union and the University.
Although many people feel individual-level sustainable actions are not the answer to environmental issues, I'm a strong believer in the ripple effect and also find that integrating sustainable thinking into my everyday activities keeps my mind constantly engaged with the larger problems.
For most students, university is their first time living away from home and might be their first time shopping and cooking for themselves. Food is also something which plays a massive part in environmental issues, from the particular foods we choose to eat, where these come from and where we buy them, to how they come packaged and what we waste. I really wanted to create something that would help give more students the confidence to cook from scratch, alongside some tips and advice on sustainable eating and buying.
I've created a low-waste recipe eBook for students with recipes and meal inspiration, which is easy to follow, dip in and out of, play around with and alter to suit anyone. I personally don’t eat meat and the recipes are in-line with this, however, I do offer suggestions to how recipes can be altered for different preferences. The recipes also cater to the equipment (or lack of) which may be found in a student kitchen. I have experience working as a cook in a vegetarian restaurant and the recipes are a selection of what I like to cook for myself with a few featured recipes from other students too.
Check out more tips and tricks and let me know what you think on my Instagram @simple_swaps.
Disclaimer: The Bath Spa blog is a platform for individual voices and views from the University's community. Any views or opinions represented in individual posts are personal, belonging solely to the author of that post, and do not represent the views of other Bath Spa staff, or Bath Spa University as an institution.
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