EnviroRAG- what’s it all about?

Today I had a meeting to finalise plans for exactly what is going on in the week we call EnviroRAG. Sounds weird I know. EnviroRAG Week is basically a coalition between the Environment and Ethics Committee and the RAG team… much better than the ConDem coalition I promise.

EnviroRAG Week is all about uniting the aims of the two committees, with a week of events aiming to raise money for charity and awareness of environmental issues. Each day has a different focus, with one day all about raising money for the RAG charities, one day all about environmental fun and games, one day that is a brand new concept this year, looking at ways in which one can be ‘charitable’ without giving money.

As well as the obvious aims of the week this year we have a new focus on bringing the activities of the two departments to both the students and the local community, and involving other student groups in the action. Basically it’s a week of wonderful collaborations… I’m thinking Paul and Barry Chuckle, Bodger and Badger, chocolate and red wine, Jesters and vomit… you get the picture.

On Monday 2nd May the week kicks off with the JCR teams going head to head in a bank holiday of fund raising competition in West Quay in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support. West Quay almost never gives fund raising permission so this is really exciting. Last time RAG raised money for Macmillan in the town centre we made over £1000 in one day… will the JCRs beat this, and which halls will raise the most? This is a day all about interacting with the local community for a great cause. Each JCR has two hours to use the space at the bottom of West Quay for imaginative fund raising; I can’t wait to see what they come up with!

The following day we bring the fund raising action on to campus and get SUSU’s awesome clubs and societies involved. The action will be focused around the red brick area, where there will be a BBQ, face painting and loads of fun and games. Again we will be giving a prize for the club or society who raises the most, so this is a chance for the groups to showcase what they can do and raise money for great causes at the same time! All the money raised on this day will go to the RAG charities 2010/11 (Practical Action, Help the Hospices and Southampton Opportunity Group).

Wednesday it gets a bit different, and we take a break from asking for money! The red brick area on this day will be showing you ways to make a difference without giving money, with opportunities such as joining the bone marrow donor register.

And in the afternoon we get stupid with a water fight on the grass… the sun will be shining I promise! RAG will be there with water balloons on sale to raise money for Water Aid, and we are hoping to find a way of using rain water to avoid wastage.

On Wednesday evening we will be hitting the Excellence in Volunteering Awards- hoping to see some awards for keen fund raisers and environmental champions!

Thursday is Environment Day, with stuff on the red brick during the day including a recycled bike sale and local grub. In the evening we will be welcoming some environmental speakers to the Union cinema for an evening of inspiring debate. There will also be some big Enviro campaigns running throughout the week- check out Practical Action’s ‘Face up to 4 degrees’ for a taster. We will be giving awards for the campaigners who engage people in the most innovative way, and debaters who really get their teeth stuck in!

And finally Friday, the grand finale- EnviroRAG Awards Night! In the Bridge on Friday night we will be announcing the grand total of money raised over the week, and giving awards to those who have raised the most, been the most inventive, or been super useful!

And Twisted… we have a top-secret EnviroRAG ‘twist’ planned for that. If I told you I’d have to… you know.

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