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How to start and run a succesful green club.
There is no end of advice out there on how to start such a club, but here are a few tips they may not give you..
Make sure the administration, at least one key member, is behind you, preferably from the very start. You will need someone to advocate for you when you come up with a campaign that needs special resources, or clearance for a special field trip, for example. One way to do this is actively to find out what the club can do to serve the school's goals and take on such a pursuit as one of your first activities.
Of course, a green club works best when you have a group of students who are passionate about the environment. You cannot always have this, but encouraging students who are less enthusiastic, but capable, to take on leadership roles within the group is a good way to build such commitment. Have different students lead smaller activities or portions of a larger campaign. Offer encouragement, guidance and praise.
Aim to make your first few campaigns extremely achievable and fun to run. Once students are seasoned a bit, they might be reader for more challenging goals. Likewise, making the first campaign or two highly engaging and visible within the school can lead to other students wanting to get involved and build the reputation of the club as visible and effective.
We cannot all live in a place where the environment greets us each day outside our door. But it cannot be overemphasized how valuable it is for green club members to visit an area where the air is clearer and the geography is at least invigorating, if not inspiring. Find ways to get your club out into "the environment" on occasion to recharge their batteries for the often thankless work of convincing others to have concern or change their behaviors.
Make a connection with some organization in your community that is working on an environmental issue and see if there is an opportuity to collaborate, or at least for your students to contribute labor or participate some other way in their activities. Working on authentic issues in the community helps students realize the real-world impacts of human behavior and gives them a sense of being part of the solution. You could also consider looking into a group that is not working explicitly on green issues, but social justice topics like helping refugees or the homeless, and explore with your group how these issues, also, have ties to the "environment."
Try these ideas for fabulous campaigns!
Resources to help make your club as effective as possible.
This space is for additional resources to help make your club better, including links to outside information that we have found effective. Look here to get greenspyred with new ideas.