Calling All UK School Pupils: Could You Be A Diet Change Champion?
June 9, 2022
The climate clock is ticking, and the future of the planet is in our hands. Global temperatures have already spiked by 1.1°C above pre-industrial levels, with the effects of climate change already causing droughts, floods and biodiversity loss. To limit the temperature rise by 1.5°C to avoid the most catastrophic effects of a warming planet, we have to take bolder and bigger actions. And we need to act fast – we need Diet Change Champions!
Farming and the eating of animals is a leading contributor to the global climate crisis, responsible for about 20% of global greenhouse gas emissions. It’s also a leading cause of land degradation, with 80% of the world’s deforestation resulting from unsustainable farming practices like cattle grazing.
But there is hope. Switching to a plant-based diet can reduce emissions by up to 50%, making diet change one of the most impactful things we can do to protect our planet. ProVeg International is a food awareness organisation that exists to reduce the global consumption of animals to protect our planet, its people, and animals alike. In the UK, we do this by helping schools to become more sustainable by providing more plant-based meals.
So we know that by serving more plant-based food, UK schools can massively reduce their carbon footprint, protecting our planet in the midst of the climate crisis. But we need your help – we need Diet Change Champions to lead their schools on the path to net zero.
We’re looking for climate-driven activists to hold “Save the Planet” days in their schools during COP27 (the 2022 United Nations Climate Conference) this November, ensuring that plant-based food takes centre stage on school menus and the message of diet change is spread far and wide.
- Teams of 1-4 students (we recommend teams of 3-4 to spread out workload)
- Students must be attending a UK secondary school
- Teams must register by emailing [email protected] with the message “I’d like to be a Diet Change Champion” by Friday 15th July 2022.
- Each Diet Change Champions team must hold at least one “Save The Planet Day” in their school during COP27 (7th – 18th November 2022)
- Each “Save The Planet Day” must encourage the uptake of plant-based food in their schools
- Extra points will be awarded to teams who go the extra mile to spread the Diet Change Not Climate Change message (see “campaign ideas” below for inspiration)
- Each team must create a short powerpoint presentation (10-15 slides) showcasing their work. These must be submitted via email to [email protected] by Friday 1st December 2022.
- Winners will be announced before Christmas break 2022 (there will be only one winning team).
- Awards presentation January 2023.
- £500 towards their school’s sustainable eating programme
- £50 each worth of vouchers for The Vegan Kind supermarket
- The Diet Change Champion trophy engraved with your team’s names
- Ask your school cafeteria to go 100% plant-based for Save The Planet Day, and offer plant-based options daily throughout COP27
- Get in touch with the ProVeg UK team if your school would like some advice on how best to do this – we offer these services free of charge via our School Plates programme
- Bake some tasty plant-based treats for other students to raise money for the campaign, or hand them out for free to show people just how good plant-based food can be!
- Ask your Home Economics department to focus on plant-based recipes for Save The Planet Day and COP27
- Create campaign posters and ask if you can put them up throughout your school
- Write a poem or a short story about climate change
- Create campaign leaflets to hand out to pupils and teachers
- Paint or draw a picture about the impact of our food systems on our planet
Give A Talk
- Educate other students about the need for diet change if we are to tackle the climate crisis
- We’ll give you a presentation template to work from with up-to-date facts and statistics
- Deliver the talk in class or at assembly
- Create a school-wide petition to reduce the amount of animal products served in school
- Gain petition signatures from pupils (aim for as many as possible!) and present the petition to your teachers, demonstrating the need for change
- Get as many pupils and staff as possible to take the Diet Change Not Climate Change Pledge
We recommend that your Diet Change Champions team have regular meetings with our Campaigns Manager Kirsty to brainstorm ideas and find out how we can help you take your campaigning to the next level. Drop Kirsty an email at [email protected] to organise your first campaign meeting once you’ve signed up – be sure to bring some ideas along!
It’s a good idea to assign roles to get the most out of your team working experience. We recommend assigning:
- A chair – responsible for delegating tasks and managing the group
- A campaigner – responsible for creating petitions and other campaign actions and communicating the campaign message to the public
- A content creator – responsible for making presentations, posters, leaflets etc
To register your team, email [email protected] before Friday 15th July 2022 with the message “I’d like to be a Diet Change Champion”. Kirsty will get back to you with some questions about your team (members, roles, school, initial ideas etc) so be sure to check your inbox.