Thank you so much to everyone who attended and spoke at the Earth Champions Essence Talks event!
The Earth Champions Essence Talks was the third event held by the Foundation over the past 10 days. Presided over by Mayor George Ferguson, the remaining Earth Champions (those yet to collect their awards) were given their awards and there was the opportunity for some of the 75 awarded Champions to speak.
The event started with an introduction to the evening from CEO and Founder Fiona Mathews, Fiona introduced Mayor George Ferguson. The Mayor spoke of the great value of the programme and how pleased he was to have been a part of the first UK Earth Champions Quest - he said that grassroots initiatives and programmes which work across cities finding unsung heroes are very valuable. He talked about the tremendous work and inspiration which all of the awarded Earth Champions have brought to the City.
Mayor George Ferguson
Mayor George Ferguson was followed by an inspiring speech from Helena Norberg-Hodge who spoke of the need for local economies and action on all levels in order to really make a difference and inspire change.
Helena Norberg- Hodge
Following this the 'State of the Local Planet Report' was given to give the audience an idea of the current state of Bristol and why they need to find their local Earth Champions to help improve their own environment and wellbeing.
Then it was time to begin the 'Essence Talks'. 19 Earth Champions spoke over the course of the evening, they were moving, passionate and motivating. The 'Essence Talks' gave each speaker 3 minutes to talk about their work, why they do it, their inspiration and what keeps them going. The awarded Earth Champions spoke from a wide range of disciplines across the 8 categories of Water, Air, Energy, Biodiversity, Built Environment, Waste Minimisation, Transport and Wellbeing. The audience listened in fascination to each speaker as they explained their work. It's clear that there is lots of room for collaboration and synergies between the Bristol and Bath Earth Champions.
The wonderful speakers :
Katcha Bilek - Katcha Bilek
Rosy Daniel - Health Creation
Andrew Grant - Grant Associates
Gill Roberts - Alive!
Rosalind Turner - Netwalking Southwest
Maddy Longhurst - Blue Finger Alliance
Steve Sliney - Collecteco
Annali Grimes - Litterarti
Jo Wright - Organic Blooms
Rajeswari Raj - Raj Architects
Dermot O'Regan - Grow Bristol
Rich Pancost - Cabot Institute
Lucy Pedler - Green Register
Craig White - Modcell
Zoe Banks - Easton Energy
Lisa Jones - Soil Association
Sra Venn - Incredible Edible
Poppy Brett - Lifecycle
Claire Miller - Linkage
Melinda Watson - Raw Foundation
Wendy Stephenson - The Converging World
Katcha Bilek and Plum
Professor Rich Pancost
The Foundation is looking forward to holding lots more 'Essence Talks' events and hearing from many of the amazing awarded Earth Champions who are yet to speak!
The event closed with a moving speech from Saffeyah Cornelieus from the London Young Stars youth group. Saffi hopes that one day all young people will have the opportunity to experience and learn about the world in the way in which she did whilst travelling with her Mum.