Every Action Counts was delivered by a Consortium of partners including the ECA and ran from March 2006 - March 2009. The Defra funded initiative was designed to help and support voluntary and community groups to take simple and effective actions to protect and improve the environment in 5 key areas.
Save Energy, Travel Wisely, Shop Ethically, Save our Resources and Care for your Area
The project also provided training for 'Community Champions', volunteers who wished to work with groups to plan which actions they wished to take, as well as generating materials for use by community development workers.
Voluntary and Community Groups
Over the duration of the initiative more than 2000 groups registered with Every Action Counts and had access to free resources including a dedicated website, community pack, guides, publications and factsheets. The website has now closed but these resources can still be found and downloaded for free on our Every Action Counts Resources Page.
"We were more organising events, now we are more hands on"
Helene Rinaldo, Postwick Green Group
800 people volunteered and were trained to become Every Action Counts Community Champions and help groups to create an 'action plan' of actions they wished to take. The training course was run by Consortium member BTCV (British Trust for Conservation Volunteers, which has since been renamed The Conservation Volunteers). Community Champions were given resources such as the two Community Champion handbooks which can be found on our Every Action Counts Resources Page.
"I really enjoyed it. Overall an excellent empowering course identifying areas of concern and presenting solutions. It was inspiring to meet other volunteers with the same enthusiasm for the environment as me."
Participant on a Community Champion training course, Norwich.
Community Development Workers
As part of their role within the project Consortium partner Federation for Community Development Learning (FCDL) developed dedicated training materials and trained trainers to deliver a range of courses on sustainable development. The FCDL materials can be found on their website.
The ECA and Every Action Counts
The ECA promoted the initiative nationally through its membership and networks as well as carrying out targeted work in Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex. Our work in these counties included attending community and environmental events with Every Action Counts promotional materials and resources as well as ECA developed materials such as the Norfolk Green Directory. This proved to be a successful way of engaging with community groups. Examples of our work can be seen in our 2007 Review.
"The ECA have really taken the tools and resources provided by Every Action Counts and used them really effectively in engaging local individuals and local community groups"
Mark Walton, Head of Every Action Counts
During the project the ECA formed a partnership with fellow Consortium member The Wildlife Trusts to focus on the 'Care for your Area' strand of the initiative. The partnership aimed to provide ECA registered community groups with advice on making areas more wildlife friendly.
The Association worked with partners including Capacity Global (now renamed Living Space Project), TPAS and FCDL in the last year of the initiative on the 'diversity project' to improve the reach of the programme and engage a range of specific diverse communities. As part of this work the ECA held workshops for third sector organisations / community groups who consisted of, or worked with, young adults up to the age of 25, older people aged over 65 and people with disabilities. The outcome of the partners work can be seen in the resulting 'Diversity Report'.
"Very well presented and targeted, information clear, concise and educational. Thanks for all your hard work and a really relaxed friendly approach"
Participant at ECA organised diversity workshop for groups of, or working with, young adults
As well as its direct work with community members the ECA contributed to the 'Every Action Counts for our Board - a guide to smart and sustainable governance' publication and produced an Every Action Counts Policy Analysis Paper on 'The Role of Adult and Family Learning in Supporting Sustainable Communities'.
The ECA's work along with that of Action with Rural Communities England (ACRE) and TPAS was celebrated in the Every Action Counts film produced towards the end of the project which featured workers from these organisations along with community groups and Community Champions that they had worked with over the course of the project. An extract from the film is below.
The film was shown at the Every Action Counts celebration event. The keynote speaker at the event Hilary Benn MP, the then Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, congratulated the programme on being inspirational and also praised the work of the ECA during the event.
Every Action Counts Legacy
The 'Third Sector Declaration on Climate Change' was created as part of Every Action Counts. The declaration is a statement of intent from third sector organisations to tackle the issue of climate change by taking actions within our organisations and communities. David Milliband MP in his role as Environment Secretary and Ed Milliband MP as Minister for the Third Sector were present at the Declaration launch in London in June 2007. The ECA were at this event and were early signatories.
The Declaration was reviewed and renewed in 2008 by Capacity Global, who have created Just Act to support Third Sector organisations take action on climate change. The Just Act website supports organisations to help each other create, implement and renew their action plan on climate change. Visit the Just Act website for more information.
Although this project ended in March 2009, work that was started during this time continues in a number of ways with community groups still continuing to take action.
"Action on climate change requires commitment, innovation, dedication and collective action. The third sector is therefore well placed to provide leadership within our respective sectors and communities. We are very impressed with the strides that local communities and voluntary organisations have made in the past three years as part of the Every Action Counts program. We are proud of everyone who has taken part and feel confident that we will be leaving behind a legacy that will serve as role model for other communities wishing to do their bit to support pro-environmental behaviour change and environmental sustainability."
Mark Walton, Head of Every Action Counts
Visit the Sustainable Development page on our website to find out about other ways in which the ECA is involved in promoting environmental sustainability.
Every Action Counts News Stories
To see ECA news stories connected with our work on Every Action counts click on the links below.
11/06/2009 All Aboard for Change
11/05/2009 Hilary Benn praises ECA
26/02/2008 Change today, Choose Fairtrade
03/12/2007 The ECA steps up to the Big Green Challenge
19/11/2007 Exciting Eurostar Journey
18/11/2007 The Wildlife Trust AGM