7 easy ways to support our community

March 03 2020
7 easy ways to support our community

A personal view from Nick Burroughs, chair of the Friends of St George Park

Most people care about their community but are short of time: here are some ideas that can make a difference.

  1. Eat cake and drink coffee at St George Library. The Friends of St George Library hold a coffee and cake morning on the first Saturday of every month, 11am-1pm. For £1.50 you can enjoy coffee and a piece of amazing cake, knowing that you are helping support the library (or sometimes a charity) and if you walk, you’ve burned off calories getting there! Also (by coincidence), our local councillor holds their ward surgery at the same time, if there is something you want to say. Please leave me a piece of cake.


  1. Pick up litter in your street. Hang on, that’s the council’s job, isn’t it? Yes, it is done by Bristol Waste and I’m certainly not suggesting that you deal with anything gross or offensive. But what about the occasional plastic crisp packet or sandwich wrapper? These end up going down drains and into watercourses then into – you guessed it – the sea. Search for Bristol Waste’s Big Tidy Pledge online if you want to know more.


  1. Drive for the environment: Ideally, we should walk or cycle or use public transport. But, if you have to drive, remember that only 20% of the pollution from cars is from the engines (I learned this from a professor of transport studies). Most of the rest comes from tyre and brake wear, which either goes into the air or is washed into the drain system. Sticking to speed limits and driving gently reduces pollution, and saves you money and stress.


  1. Report Things: Tell someone if something needs fixing or dealing with. Streetlight out? Fallen tree? Antisocial behaviour? If it doesn’t get reported, it often doesn’t get fixed. Don’t worry whether someone else might have reported it – multiple reports create pressure to get things done. Most problems are covered by the council, Bristol Waste or the police and it only takes a few minutes to report.


  1. Express your opinions on community issues: How about joining the Bristol Citizens’ Panel? This lets you share your views and ideas on a wide range of issues affecting the city, as well as putting you in the draw for £40 shopping vouchers. Also, talk to your local councillor if there is something you think is wrong (or right) or needs attention.


  1. Enjoy the green bits: We have amazing green spaces such as Troopers Hill and St George Park that are good for us, our families and our environment. Spending time in green spaces is good for physical and mental health, as well as being community in the most fun sense. If you want to make these places even more special, contact the associated friends group.


  1. Do Stuff: If you find yourself saying “someone should do something”, ask yourself: “Should that someone be me?” You might not be able to do it on your own or it might just need you to phone or email someone. There are others out there who feel the same – it is people, more than money, that gets things done.


Pick one (or two) of these, feel good and support our community.