Category: Events (Page 1 of 9)

Welcome to King’s Sustainability: events

Are you interested in all things sustainable and making a positive impact whilst at King’s? This Welcome Fortnight, the Sustainability team have prepared an exciting range of events for you to learn more about climate and sustainability. Check them out below. You can also find us at various hubs and fairs – come have a chat!

Introduction to Sustainability

12/09/2022, 14:00-14:45 Online Are you passionate about sustainability and want to make a difference? Join the King’s Sustainability Team to learn more about what King’s is doing around sustainability, and how you can get involved.
Climate Action at King’s 13/09/2022, 15:00-16:00 Online What action is King’s taking on the climate crisis? How can you take individual and collective climate action while at King’s?

Join this session to find out more about King’s recently approved Climate & Sustainability Action Plan and opportunities to get involved in climate action at King’s.

Volunteering for Sustainability 14/09/2022, 14:00-15:00 Online

Passionate about sustainability and climate change? Want to do more to help local communities?

Join King’s Volunteering and King’s Sustainability to find out how you can take action for sustainability and volunteer to help meet the UN Sustainability Development Goals.

Projects include: Climate Action Network, Sustainability Champions programme, KEATS Sustainability & Climate module and education for sustainability mapping project.

You will also learn more about the King’s Volunteering platform, discover sustainability-related opportunities with our partner charities and organisations and find out how to log hours/get recognition for the volunteering work you do.

Explore sustainability at King’s and discover volunteering opportunities that are directly tied to the SDGs to kickstart your sustainability journey!

This event is for all students at King’s.

Take action on sustainability at home 15/09/2022, 15:00-16:00 Online Do you care about sustainability but not sure where to start? Join this session to hear some useful tips from the King’s Sustainability Team on how to be more sustainable (and possibly even save some money!) in the home environment.
Sustainability & Volunteering Creative Hackathon 20/09/2022, 14:00-16:00 Strand MB4.2 Join us in exploring ways to change the world during your time at King’s! We’ll be tackling the UN Sustainable Development Goals through Sustainability and Volunteering projects at King’s and in our local communities.

Let’s get creative – in this hackathon, we’ll provide a range of creative prompts and art supplies to help you create solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. You’ll get to know other students, think about social and environmental impact, and work together to imagine the answers and shape the future direction of the Sustainability, Volunteering and Culture teams.

We’ll provide snacks, refreshments & art supplies!
This event is for all students at King’s.

Tour a sustainable lab at King’s 21/09/2022, 13:30-15:30 Guy’s campus – Guys Memorial Garden Join this session to learn more about sustainable labs at King’s!

Labs are extremely energy and resource intensive, so you’ll hear about what labs at King’s are doing on their sustainability journey. You’ll explore why lab sustainability is important, while also experiencing a guided tour of two labs to see what they’re doing.

There will be lots of space for questions with lab sustainability champions, and you’ll hear more about what you can do to get involved!

Sustainability games night 22/09/2022, 16:00-18:00 Strand MB2.2 Are you interested in learning more about sustainability? Or want to prove your sustainable knowledge? Join our quiz night that’ll be full of games, quizzes and competition! It’ll be a great session to meet like-minded students and the King’s Sustainability Team while learning more about sustainability in a fun way.
Vegan and sustainable food at King’s 23/09/2022, 15:00-17:00 Somerset Room, Strand Join this event with King’s Food and King’s Sustainability teams to find out more about vegan and sustainable food initiatives – and leave with a bag full of yummy vegan snacks!

Have a look at how you can get involved with King’s Sustainability. Make a difference during your time at King’s!

How to register

  1. You’ll need to download the Life at King’s app from the App store (you can download onto iOS and Android.)
  2. ​​​​​​You’ll need to download the Welcome to King’s Guide for all information for new students. To access this guide, you’ll need to enter our passphrase reggielion22 (no spaces)
    • The Welcome to King’s Guide will be the first stage of welcoming you into university, offering a range of information from ID card collection to new opportunities at King’s.
  3. ​​​​​When you’ve downloaded the Life at King’s app, you will need to create an account; we advise that you use your King’s email address to create an account. ​​​​​​
  4. Once you’ve set up your account, allow ‘push notifications’ on your device, so you can receive important messages.
  5. Go to Welcome Events & Workshops and scroll down to “Sustainability”
  6. Check out our events across the two weeks and register by clicking “+”

Sustainability Awards 2022 

This blog post was written by Lavinia Allen, King’s Sustainability Projects Assistant. You can read the news story on King’s central pages here. 


On Monday 18th July 2022, students and staff came together at the King’s Sustainability Awards to celebrate the efforts and achievements of everyone who has worked tirelessly this year to make King’s a more sustainable place.  

The ceremony took place in the Great Hall on Strand Campus. This was the first in-person awards ceremony since 2019, making it extra special. During the core of the ceremony, we celebrated the hard work of the 500+ staff Sustainability Champions who completed 2,800 actions on sustainability this year. 

Group photo of Sustainability Award attendees and Senior Leaders.

Group photo of Sustainability Award attendees and Senior Leaders.

61 Sustainability Champions teams were awarded: 

  • 1 Working Towards Sustainability Dozen 
  • 13 Sustainability Dozen 
  • 7 Bronze 
  • 1 Working Towards Silver 
  • 5 Silver 
  • 34 Gold 

Office and Residence Teams: 

Sustainability Dozen  Bronze  Silver  Gold 
Clinical Pharmacology  James Black Centre Offices  Arts & Humanities Cluster Offices (Working Towards)  Entrepreneurship Institute 
Deans Office  Research Management and Innovation Directorate  Vascular Biology & Inflammation  Estates and Facilities, Lavington Street 
Denmark Hill Estates and Facilities      Geography 
Global Mobility Office (Working Towards)  Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience 
Guys & Waterloo Chaplaincies  King’s Sport 
International Development  School of Global Affairs 
King’s Online/KPED  Service Centre 
Libraries & Collections, Franklin-Wilkins Library  Social Mobility & Widening Participation 
Libraries & Collections, IoPPN Library  Strand Estates and Facilities 
Libraries & Collections, Maughan Library  The Dickson Poon School of Law 
Libraries & Collections, New Hunts’ House Library  Wolfson House Residence 
Libraries & Collections, St Thomas’ House Library   
Libraries & Collections, Weston Education Centre Library 

 

Lab Teams: 

Bronze  Silver  Gold 
Biological Services  Centre for Developmental Neurobiology  Analytical, Environmental and Forensic Sciences – DNA analysis 
Centre for Inflammation Biology and Cancer Immunology  Engineering  Analytical, Environmental and Forensic Sciences – Drug Control Centre 
Division of Women & Children’s Health (Hodgkin)  Institute of Hepatology  Analytical, Environmental and Forensic Sciences – Genetic and Environmental Toxicology 
Human & Applied Physiological Sciences    Analytical, Environmental and Forensic Sciences – King’s Forensics 
Physics Research Labs (Nanophotonics Suite)  Analytical, Environmental and Forensic Sciences – Lab 4.134 
Randall Division of Cell and Molecular Biophysics  Basic and Clinical Neuroscience 
  Cardiovascular Research 
Centre for Gene Therapy & Regenerative Medicine 
Chemistry Research 
Chemistry Teaching 
Diabetes Research Group 
Dissecting Room 
Division of Women & Children’s Health (St Thomas’) 
Geography 
Guy’s Multi Disciplinary Labs 
Innovation Hub, Guy’s Cancer Centre 
James Black Centre: Cardiovascular Sciences 
Nutrition Sciences 
School of Immunology & Microbial Sciences 
SGDP Centre, Molecular Genetics Lab 
Twin Research (The Rayne Institute) 
Vascular Biology & Inflammation 
Wolfson Centre for Age-related Diseases 
Director of Sustainability, Kat Thorne, hosting the awards ceremony.

Director of Sustainability, Kat Thorne, hosting the awards ceremony.

We also had a Special Awards category where we recognised and celebrated the hard work of individuals and groups who took part in sustainability initiatives, projects, and programmes this year. 

Members of staff in this category included: 

  • Dola Akanmu 
  • Glyn Jones 
  • Kautuk Chaddha 
  • IoPPN offices 

Other wider groups: 

  • 84 students who completed the KEATS Sustainability & Climate Module (between March-June) 
  • 6 students who took part in the Sustainable Development Goal Curriculum Mapping project 
  • 6 students and staff from the King’s Climate Action Network  
  • 5 students and alumni who co-hosted and co-produced the Spotlight on Sustainability Podcast 
  • School of Global Affairs communications team 
  • Damely Akizhanova for their work on the Sustainability Residence Committees
  • The King’s Procurement Team  
A variety of celebratory cakes

A variety of celebratory cakes.

THANK YOU! 

A massive thank you to everyone who has contributed to our successes at King’s this year. The combined efforts of everyone involved have a significant impact and aid in achieving our university sustainability goals. 

Achievements this year include: 

  • King’s has reduced its carbon emissions by more than half (51%) since 2005/06 baseline 
  • King’s has divested from all fossil fuels – one year ahead of schedule 
  • King’s ranked in top 5 UK universities for environmental & social impact in the Times Higher Education (THE) Impact Rankings, as well as second in the UK in the People & Planet League table this year. 
  • 500+ people taking part in the Sustainability Champions programme and 350+ members of the Climate Action Network (CAN)  
  • Between September 2021 and July 2022, over 1,400 attendees came together across 87 events and training opportunities ran by the King’s Sustainability Team 
  • The development of the KEATS Sustainability & Climate module, which had over 600 students and staff enrol and over 180 complete the full module and receive sustainability awards  
  • Over 1000 modules mapped against the Sustainable Development Goals, carried out with the help of over 60 trained students and staff 
  • All King’s suppliers must now sign up to the Sustainability Supply Chain Code of Conduct. This is a huge step to reducing our carbon emissions, as our supply chain is the biggest source of carbon (scope 3)  
  • King’s Food & Venues choice menus are now 70% vegetation and vegan 
  • King’s has recently been awarded the highest rating of three stars by the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA) rating, as well as being re-accredited as a Fairtrade university.  

Join us! There are lots of projects and ways to get involved in sustainability at King’s: 

  • If you would like to find out more about becoming a Sustainability Champion, please register via this form and contact the Sustainability Team at sustainability@kcl.ac.uk. 
  • If you would like to join the Climate Action Network, register here.  
  • If you would like to enrol on the KEATS Sustainability & Climate module (to be re-launched in October ‘22), register here. If you would like to join the Take Action team of students and staff developing this module – please email sustainability@kcl.ac.uk 
  • If you are a student living in a hall of residence and would like to get involved in shaping the Sustainability Living Communities programme, get in touch. 
King’s Sustainability Team. From left to right: Rachel Harrington-Abrams, Emily Read, Tasnia Yasmin, Kat Thorne, Alexandra Hepple, Jone De Roode Jauregui, Lavinia Allen, Nicola Hogan.

King’s Sustainability Team. From left to right: Rachel Harrington-Abrams, Emily Read, Tasnia Yasmin, Kat Thorne, Alexandra Hepple, Jone De Roode Jauregui, Lavinia Allen, Nicola Hogan.

Sustainable education at King’s Academy Festival

This blog post was written by Tasnia Yasmin, King’s Sustainability Projects Assistant.


Image of the Sustainable Development Goal Curriculum Mapping posterThe King’s Academy Learning & Teaching Festival is an annual event which celebrates education and learning across King’s. I presented the education for sustainable development (ESD) work that the Sustainability team have been working on over this last year. This included our KEATS Sustainability & Climate module as well as our Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Curriculum mapping. These were both 2 workshops which linked to the key themes of the festival which were sustainable education as well as co-creation with students.  

Both workshops were taken very well. Many were impressed with our student co-creation model for the KEATS Sustainability & Climate module and how well we have done since its inception earlier this year (122 completed the module!). From the seminars organised alongside the module to the quizzes and interactive elements of the module; it showed everyone how broad and intersectional sustainability truly is.  

Staff feedback from the SDG Mapping session also showed that ESD is something that they are wanting to actively incorporate into teaching and learning within modules and the faculty. As a team we are actively looking for opportunities to help staff and students embed sustainability into their module; it’s not something that sits separately but needs to be weaved into everything. Everything can be tied to sustainability whether it is social justice, the climate crisis or looking at circular economies.  

This was followed by an in-person day with poster presentations and further workshops. I presented the key findings of the SDG Mapping which included how colleagues could look at working in ESD to their own teaching as well as wider commitments from the college. It was great seeing everyone and  being able to network with colleagues who wanted to work together to further sustainability and inclusivity.  

All this work furthers on from a previous ESD report that we did in 2014 and we have seen and made progress since then. Many students themselves have led societies with specific sustainable education areas and colleagues have been including sustainability within their curricula from English to Dentistry. We are hoping we can connect and work with more students and staff to help them embed and develop sustainability within learning.  

Student Auditors for Sustainability Champions

Last week, students from a variety of degree backgrounds volunteered as Student Sustainability Auditors. They received IEMA approved training on sustainability auditing, which they then used to audit teams of Sustainability Champions at King’s across two days. Find out more about the Sustainability Champions programme here.

We asked the students how they found the experience:

May be an image of 7 people, people standing and indoor

 

“Training was very helpful and well presented. Using this method to evaluate organizations in sustainability efforts will be beneficial in future interactions personally and professionally. A very insightful experience.”

“I have enjoyed this opportunity to learn more about what different departments are doing at King’s and how they are able to improve this. It was also good to be able to meet fellow students with a similar interest in the topic.”

“I really enjoyed the training and met interesting people. It was really exciting to look into all the meaningful work the sustainability team and the sustainability champions are doing.”

Mental health and sustainability – what’s the link?

This blog post has been adapted from a post written last year by Helena Fazeli for Mental Health Awareness Week. Trigger warning – this blog discusses mental health and suicide.


Mental Health Awareness Week (9-15 May 2022) is the UK’s national week to raise awareness of mental health and mental health problems. The theme this year is loneliness and the week aims to raise awareness of the impact of loneliness on our mental health and the practical steps we can take to address it.

How do mental health and sustainability intersect?

#1 SDG 3 – Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all

One of Sustainable Development Goal Three’s (SDG 3) targets is to “reduce by one-third premature mortality from non-communicable diseases through prevention and treatment and promote mental health and well-being”. Awareness of the importance of addressing mental health has increased in recent years, and rightly so: depression represents one of the leading causes of disability, suicide is the second leading cause of death amongst 15-29-year-olds, and people with severe mental health conditions are at risk of premature death due to preventable physical conditions (WHO, 2021). Additionally, individuals with mental health conditions may face stigma, discrimination and human rights violations. 

While SDG 3 focuses explicitly on mental health, achieving this target requires progress across all 17 SDGs. Mental health and wellbeing are intricately linked to challenges such as poverty, inequality, work, education, gender, infrastructure, air pollution, access to quality green spaces, peace etc. Not only do these factors increase the risk of poor mental health, but they also impact the accessibility and quality of mental health services. 

One example is emergency contexts, including natural disasters, conflict and forced migrationduring which many individuals will face temporary distress. In the longer term, the prevalence of common mental disorders generally doubles in a humanitarian crisis due to increased poverty, lack of security, separation from family, community and home, and trauma. Overall, it has been estimated that 1 in 5 people living in an area affected by conflict will have a common mental health condition. Finally, it is important to note that climate change is expected to exacerbate many of these issues, thus causing greater and wider distress, which leads us to our next topic… 

#2 Climate change and mental health

When you think about climate change, mental health might not be the first thing that comes to mind. We often discuss climate change on a global scale, in terms of physical processes and tangible, measurable impacts. However, it both directly and indirectly impacts individuals’ and communities’ mental health and psychological well-being. 

Indeed, climate change and its associated impacts (rising sea levels, changing temperatures, extreme weather patterns, wildfires, droughts, food and water insecurity, etc.) put at risk a range of phenomena that people and communities value and rely on in their daily lives, both material and non-material, from homes, landscapes and ecosystems to cultural traditions, livelihoods, identities and social cohesion… From forced displacement to gradual changes in an environment, feelings of loss – loss of place, loss of identity, decreased sense of self – can arise. And, as mentioned above, these impacts are more acutely felt in communities and populations where climate change intersects with pre-existing health conditions, socioeconomic inequities and unequal power dynamics. 

#3 The rise of eco-anxiety 

As with many crises, the climate crisis is causing (justifiably) strong emotional responses, in people and communities around the world. Amongst inspiration and hope for change, feelings of anger, hopelessness, guilt and fear are common and natural. 

Eco-anxiety refers to the stress caused by “watching the slow and seemingly irrevocable impacts of climate change unfold” or the “feelings of helplessness, anger, […] panic and guilt toward the climate and ecological crisis”Force of Nature has been studying the occurrence of eco-anxiety amongst youth globally. They found that amongst 500 respondents, over 70% had experienced feelings of hopelessness in the face of climate change. 

In recognition of the interconnectedness between the health of our minds, bodies and planet, last year’s Mental Health Awareness Week’s theme was indeed nature. This demonstrates how sustainability refers not only to environmental sustainability but also to social sustainability.

When you’re feeling overwhelmed by the immensity of the climate crisis, be kind to yourself, and connect with your loved ones and your community. However, if symptoms of anxiety are interfering with your ability to function well and feel good, we encourage you to seek professional help. Here are some ways you can find support at King’s: KCLSU’s wellbeing eventsPositive PeersCounselling and Mental Health supportBlack Students TalkOut-of-hours counselling. You can also find resources here and here

Get involved this Mental Health Awareness Week

Join the Mental Health & Climate Change seminar (13 May)

What are the links between mental health and climate change? What is eco-anxiety? And how can we go about overcoming this?

To mark the UK mental health awareness week, King’s Sustainability will be joined by neuroscientist Dr Kris De Meyer for a lean-forward seminar on mental health & climate change. According to Kris, the best way to combat eco-anxiety is opening up pathways to action, to give the sense that we are not powerless and that we can indeed do something that is meaningful and can make a difference.

Kris will briefly explain the brain basis of eco-anxiety before diving into interesting break-out room activities exploring how to cope with it. Join this interactive seminar led by an expert on eco-anxiety to build your own eco-anxiety “toolkit” by identifying what your personal pathway to action might be in a safe, positive environment.

Kris is a Visiting Research Fellow at King’s Department of Neuroimaging and the Director of the UCL Climate Action Unit.

This seminar is part of a series that runs monthly between October ‘21 and June ’22 covering some of the biggest topics in sustainability. If you would like to stay in the loop about upcoming seminars, please sign up here. These seminars are linked to the KEATS Sustainability module which we are piloting this year. You can enrol on the module here.

KCLSU’s Take Time Out (3-20 May)

Take Time Out is taking place until the 20th of May and aims to encourage you to schedule in some time, away from your studies, to boost your wellbeing, take a break and connect with the King’s community. See all events here.

More opportunities at King’s

This coming week, King’s wants to focus on what we can do individually and as a community to foster connections and support each other. Access King’s gyms and BeActive programme for free and join the events on journaling, connecting with charities, a virtual coffee morning, or one of the mindfulness sessions. Find out more here.


Some further reading on the topic

Tackling social inequalities to reduce mental health problems: How everyone can flourish equally

Mental Health and our Changing Climate: Impacts, Implications, and Guidance 

The case for systems thinking about climate change and mental health 

Caring for the environment helps to care for your mental health 

Mental health and the environment 

Mental health and wellbeing in the Sustainable Development Goals 

The Lancet Commission on global mental health and sustainable development 

This Must Be the Place: Underrepresentation of Identity and Meaning in Climate Change DecisionMaking

Place identity and climate change adaptation: a synthesis and framework for understanding

“From this place and of this place:” Climate change, sense of place, and health in Nunatsiavut, Canada

Examining relationships between climate change and mental health in the Circumpolar North 

Happy Earth Day 2022!

Happy Earth Day 2022!

This is the moment to change it all — the business climate, the political climate, and how we take action on climate. Now is the time for the unstoppable courage to preserve and protect our health, our families, and our livelihoods.

For Earth Day 2022, we need to act (boldly), innovate (broadly), and implement (equitably). It’s going to take all of us. All in. Businesses, governments, and citizens — everyone accounted for, and everyone accountable. A partnership for the planet.

EARTHDAY.ORG

Check out the images below to see how the King’s community has come together to engage with the climate crisis, developing innovative and inclusive solutions. Sign up to these initiatives here.

 

Also have a look at this recent research, co-authored by King’s Geography’s visiting professor Sampurno Bruijnzeel, which explores the importance of restoring native forests for greatest climate and environmental benefits – but this comes with trade-offs for wood production. 

Cycling in London event & survey

Two photographs showing a bike mechanic looking at a bicycle in the courtyard of Bush House.On 3rd March, a cycling event was held at Bush House as part of Sustainability Month to increase awareness and understanding of how students and staff can get started with cycling in London.

The event consisted of a “Dr Bike” session, where external bike maintenance mechanics provided free bike health checks, advice, and small fixes (fully funded by Westminster City Council).

Students were also on hand to provide information to help others get into cycling, particularly focusing on commuting to campus. They discussed where the bike lockers are on campus and how to access them, information offered by external organisations (for example, TFL cycle safety pages and relevant council pages for cycle buddy schemes), and KCL’s Cycling club.


Two photographs showing a bike mechanic looking at a bicycle in the courtyard of Bush House.

The COVID pandemic forced us to rethink how we travel to campus. Cycling was identified as being a safer, more sustainable mode of travel that also supports wellbeing. King’s is keen to support our ‘new ways of working’ so identifying where improvements to cycling provisions need to be made is central to that.

To help us identify what those improvements might be, please could you take this 5-minute survey by 17 May? Your responses will shape how we grow the estate to meet everyone’s needs. Please direct any queries to Ruonan Zhang.

The Careers & Employability Festival starts next week!

How does sustainability tie into a career in healthcare or arts & entertainment? What jobs lie in the environmental sector?

Join this Careers & Employability Festival to hear from professionals who studied subjects from clinical medicine to museum studies to geography and are now part of the Greener NHS Programme, own sustainable fashion businesses, work in climate finance, renewable energy, and more. They will be discussing how they incorporated sustainability into their careers.

Sound intriguing? Find more information and sign up here.

12 April: Be a sustainability changemaker in any and every career.
14 April: Assessing your future organisation’s commitment to sustainability.
26 April: Build your employability for a sustainability career.

New series of climate education conversations

This blog post was adapted from this King’s news article.


Science education researchers from King’s and the University of York have partnered to launch a new series of online workshops bringing together teachers, teacher educators, young people and researchers to discuss climate change and sustainability education. There will be four workshops in total and the first one on 30 March will focus on Climate Conversation Big Questions.

This initiative builds on the BERA Manifesto for Education for Environmental Sustainability, to which teachers, teacher educators and youth contributed in 2021.  Among their concerns, they identified the need to have greater opportunities to explore ideas on climate education with others.

These virtual discussions will offer a supportive space where young people (16 years +), teachers, teacher educators, educators and researchers can share ideas and perspectives focused on some of the key topics in climate change and sustainability education, thus learning from each other as individuals as well as networks.

Programme:

Register now to join the climate education conversations.

Sustainability Month 2022: a true celebration

What a month! Throughout February, we welcomed hundreds of people to more than 20 social and educational events focused on taking action around the Sustainable Development Goals. Organised by students, staff members, and alumni from across disciplines, this month was a true celebration of the breadth of sustainability and the King’s community’s involvement in it.

We learned to reflect on our stories in the climate and nature crisis and got inspired to take action in the events on volunteering, recycled glass, plant-based diets, and greener ways to grow your veg. We learned how we might address the climate crisis from a policy perspective, what digital start-ups can do to advance the SDGs, and what some of the main inequality issues are in South Korea. The interconnectedness of environmental and social sustainability was highlighted during the panel for climate justice and the event on the climate crisis and refugees, and we learned how we might go about translating that into education. The Shots for Hope exhibition and the Visions for the Future workshop series helped us to stay hopeful in the face of the climate crisis.

The month brought people together socially in events such as the sustainability quiz night, stitch and pitch, and the show the love campaign, as well as professionally in the interdisciplinary sustainability research forum and the London Student Sustainability Conference. The events on careers in sustainability helped students explore the breadth of what this means for their future.

If you missed an event, you can find the event recordings here. Not all recordings have been uploaded yet, but we aim to do so as soon as possible. We will also be posting event summaries and reflections on our blog over the next few weeks, so keep an eye out for those. If you have any feedback you would like to share, please fill out this feedback form. If you would like to write a blog post on an event you organised or attended, feel free to get in touch.

« Older posts