Sustainability Action Blog


Student teams: gain the recognition you deserve

By Julia Kendal |

In 2014 Cameroon Catalyst won the Student Team Award for their work improving the quality of life of those living in eastern rural Cameroon. If your team submits an application by the end of February, this year’s award could be yours.

Sustainability Action Awards.v2

Last year’s diverse applicants showed the variety of current activities by students at Southampton which are shaping the world for the better – locally and globally, through volunteering and research. The 2014 winners were working with villagers in Cameroon to bring access to medicine and education; the runners up, Green Label, were changing things here in Southampton, helping students and staff to make better ethical and environmental shopping choices on campus. Whatever and wherever you’re doing it, if you’re team is working to improve people’s lives and environment, apply now.

Read on for more about the winning and runner up 2014 student teams.

cameroon_catalyst_Bambouti Medical CentreWinner: Cameroon Catalyst 

Over the past four years, they worked in the village of Bambouti, providing a mechanics workshop where people learn new carpentry skills, a sustainable electricity supply using solar panels and school buildings, giving local children greater access to education and catalysing change for their future. The medical centre they built means that villagers can be treated locally instead of completing the two-hour drive to the nearest facility. Refrigeration in the medical centre means that for the first time the majority of young children in the village have been able to receive potentially life-saving vaccinations. They are investing in the local economy by hiring local people for the majority of the construction and using local materials where possible. The projects are designed to be self-sufficient, running with no outside assistance in the future. Cameroon Catalyst plan to expand to other villages in Cameroon and ultimately to other African nations in similar need of support.

Runner up: Green Label Project

The Green Label Project was created as an easy tool communicate the environmental and ethical credentials of products on campus in a simple, easy to understand way. The project was started in 2012 and continues to be run by a group of students volunteers. They began by finding out which issues students cared most about; following this, four labels and their criteria were designed: “I’m well packaged”, “I’m local, “I’m gluten free”, and “I’m vegan”. You can see these labels in the SUSU café and SUSU shop; use them to help you buy food with a lower environmental impact and support local businesses.










Use ‘awards’ to see further posts on awards news and previous winners.