6th June 2018

    Pilgrims Green Champions join the national war on plastic campaign

    During April and May 2018, the Green Champions team at Pilgrims Hospice Ashford started a litter picking campaign as part of the national war on plastic waste.

    The Green Champions are Pilgrims staff members who strive to create and strengthen health, wellbeing and sustainability in the working environment.  They’re formed from members of the care, administration and catering teams, amongst others; all wishing to take better care of the environment and reduce Pilgrims’ environmental impact.

    The group started in May 2017 and has been inspiring colleagues by setting examples, leading and sharing ideas and thoughts on how best to work and manage green initiatives in the workplace.

    We will continue to share our ideas with colleagues and encourage even more of them to get involved.

    Wendy Kelk, Hospice Services Manager at Ashford

    The Green Champions went out in pairs for 15-minute periods over three weeks to clean up a concentrated area around the Ashford hospice. The efforts were maximised on the verges outside the hospice grounds on the busy main road.

    The first week they collected a significant amount of rubbish, which included plastic bottles, coffee cups and discarded lunch items like sandwich wrappers. The second week it was much improved; the team only collected a small amount of rubbish. By the third week the rubbish had increased from week two, but not as much as week one. However, this time the rubbish was mainly cling film and wrappers. All rubbish collected has been recycled.

    Wendy Kelk, Pilgrims Hospices Services Manager for the Ashford hospice, said: “It’s great to have such a motivated group really helping Pilgrims to consider green issues. We’ve had a number of initiatives around the hospice that have encouraged staff and visitors to think about the environment and to be greener.

    “We will continue to share our ideas with colleagues and encourage even more of them to get involved.”

    The Green Champions are now going to go out monthly and will continue with the war on plastic litter picking campaign at Ashford.

    The team now have a clearer picture of the rubbish trends and share the following information:

    • The first week there were traffic lights outside the hospice and it appears people were throwing their rubbish out of cars.
    • The third week was mainly cling film due an event that took place on the Pilgrims site. The feedback was shared with the events team who will in turn make extra efforts to encourage participants to dispose of rubbish correctly at future events.

    The Green Champions are keen to spread the good news and let the public know that Pilgrims shares concerns around the control of plastic. They encourage all Pilgrims staff to lead by example.

    Each year Pilgrims supports hundreds of local people coping with a life limiting illness and their families. The charity offers a range of services: from end of life care given on its wards, to its Wellbeing and Social Programme supporting people after they are diagnosed to live well and stay independent.

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