‘Cooperation’ is one of our five core commitments at A Rocha UK and we work collaboratively with other organisations and within coalitions, to achieve the best collective impact from our resources. Some examples of initiatives we are involved in, to help inform and support action by Christians in the UK include:
- Climate Sunday. With the UN climate talks (COP26) scheduled for Glasgow between 9-21 November, there is a unique opportunity and need to mobilise UK churches to deepen their action to combat climate disruption. A Rocha UK is playing a key role in a one-off Climate Sunday initiative, which was launched on June 5 (World Environment Day). Our Chief Executive, Andy Atkins, and chair of the coalition said: “Our vision is to leave a lasting legacy of thousands of UK churches better equipped to address the climate crisis as part of their normal discipleship and mission; and to make a very significant contribution to civil society efforts to secure adequate national and international action at the COP26 conference. We invite every single UK church community to take part.” Hear more from Andy about the Climate Sunday vision in his podcast with the Methodist Church here (play from 12 minutes and 50 seconds).
- The Climate Coalition – In June, alongside 56 other UK charities and as members of The Climate Coalition, A Rocha UK sent Prime Minister Boris Johnson a letter calling for a global green and fair recovery. The seven-point Green Recovery Plan outlines what the UK Government needs to do to get us on track to a healthy, green and fair recovery. You can read the Recovery plan we have signed here.
- Hope for the Future. Hope for the Future works with churches and other groups and individuals across the country to communicate the urgency of climate change with their local politicians. They are currently running a number of weekly webinars on a different theme each week, accessible here. A Rocha UK’s Head of Conservation, Andy Lester will be speaking as part of the ‘Keeping Faith in the Climate’ series 13-16 July. Join him on 13 July where he will be speaking on ‘Grief and Hope – what spiritual practices can we cultivate in response to the climate crisis?’. Register here.
- Wildlife and Countryside Link. We have been working with Wildlife and Countryside Link; a national organisation representing over 50 conservation charities to encourage the UK government to focus on a green recovery from the Covid-19 crisis. The Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs(DEFRA) and The Treasury now have access to a new collaborative report which includes ideas proposed by A Rocha UK. This includes the concept of a natural health service where there is much greater focus and provision on restoring nature and at the same time tackling underlying mental health conditions, such as depression.
- 360 Carbon Calculator – Born out of a pilot project carried out by Leeds Diocese in 2018 and commissioned by A Rocha UK and the Church of England, we’re delighted that the new Church Carbon footprint calculator, developed by Climate Stewards and designed to work for all church denominations, is now live. A collaborative web-based tool, the 360 Carbon Calculator enables churches to measure their carbon footprint from different activities – energy, travel, food, waste, water and other expenditure. It has been built in collaboration with the developers of the Anglican Church’s recently launched Energy Footprint Tool (EFT), which means that energy data can easily, and automatically, be shared between the two tools. Entirely voluntary and free to use, 360carbon is now linked from the Eco Church website so that churches are asked to use it to measure their footprint as part of their progression towards an award. A huge thanks to Climate Stewards for their hard work on this.