Climate Action Kildare - How To Get Involved

So, maybe you are like many of us, and feeling anxious about Climate Change and what might happen to our world. Climate anxiety is a very real thing and with so many negative events being highlighted in the media, it can be overwhelming at times. For me, action is always an antidote to feeling bad, so this post is all about offering some options for how you might get involved in Climate Action in Kildare.
First of all, I have to stress that we all have different circumstances and abilities and sometimes, I suppose, it is easy to feel like small contributions aren't enough. I firmly believe, though, that anything you can do is of benefit. Maybe you don't have time or energy to go to meetings, but you have a reusable cup and you try to leave the car at home sometimes. That is enough if that is all you can do because it is all about raising awareness and leading by example.  However, if you do have the will to do a bit more, I'm going to list a few options here in Kildare that might suit.

First up - some online groups and pages. I think these are an important starting point for getting conversations going and for making connections with like minded people. (The following are groups that are run by me or that I am very familiar with which is why I am linking these particular ones).

Sustainable Steps - my own group
Kildare C4CA - Page

The benefit, I think, of online groups is that you can dip your toes in and you might find that someone else gives you an idea that works in your own area or you might be inspired to make some changes in your own life.  I have learnt a lot from online groups and have also made some great friends.

Secondly I am going to suggest that you use your voting power and also connect with your Council and Councillors. This can be tailored to your own time requirements. It could be simply emailing a prospective candidate about their environmental policies (something which I did before the last local elections and I was happy with the response and ended up helping the campaign). It could be asking for local environmental issues to be put forward as Council motions. It can be more time consuming to write submissions and contribute that way but it is something that might suit if you are happy to read long reports and the process of public consultation is vital for long term change.

Join an organisation - there are many I'm sure and I don't have a comprehensive list but I'll start with Tidy Towns. Many Tidy Towns are now moving away from the traditional neat and tidy idea of beauty and towards a more ecological approach. My own town's Kilcullen Community Action has a biodiversity sub group as well as a climate action sub group and I think many groups are doing wonderful work with pollintor friendly planting and allowing areas to grow wild. There is further information here about how you might get involved from Kildare Council - Tidy Towns Network
If you are a parent, it might suit to join a green schools committee or get your school involved.
Extinction Rebellion has a couple of branches if activism and demonstration is what you would like to do.
If you are in a sports club you could maybe encourage zero waste policies and reducing plastic or suggest setting up a sub-group to look at all those issues.

Some other organisations in Kildare:
Birdwatch Ireland Kildare Branch
Sustainable Energy Communities in Monasterevin/Clane/Naas/Johnstown/Maynooth
Zero Waste Community Garden Rathcoffey
Ballinafagh Lake Conservation Group

Volunteering is a brilliant way of helping others and research has shown that it increases our own personal sense of wellbeing too. This of course depends on how much time you have and if you have small kids, it can be difficult to make committments to outside stuff but there are possibilities. I volunteered one morning a week in our local Camphill community garden for a few years and it suited whilst my daughters were in school.
Some volunteering opportunities are listed on the Volunteer Kildare Site and the Irish Peatland Conservation Council also have volunteer opportunities.

Another way to contribute is simply to support eco-business and business in general in your own area. I believe that Community Resilience is going to be more of a focus of interest in the future. With the potential consequences of the climate crisis, we may find that we need to rely on each other more and more and having strong support networks and local food and facilities is integral to this.

Hopefully these ideas have been helpful - as I said, it is not a comprehensive list but more a starting point so do feel free to comment if you have an organisation you would like me to share!

You might also enjoy:

Veganuary - Tips from a Novice
2019 in Review- Reconnection and Healing the Planet

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