So you might be interested in sustainability, but maybe you don’t know where to start! That’s alright. Today I’m going to share with you my best tips for getting involved in your community and building strong networks.
Whether you’re new to sustainability or have been fighting against climate change for years, one thing is clear– go talk to people! Each person you meet has a different perspective, and taking a step out of your comfort zone and talking to like-minded people not only provides you valuable connections you can use in the future, but allows you to recharge and become inspired by the initiatives that other people are working on. People are here to help, and I think you’d be surprised by how many people are willing to lend a hand if you just ask. So many projects and events I’ve been to or learned about are thanks to other people around me spreading the word! And don’t just talk. The people around you often have good advice if you’re willing to listen.
Where exactly do you find these magical like-minded people who are just as or even more passionate about sustainability? You guessed it. Drop your bags and leave your preconceptions at home because getting involved starts with doing things in your community! Do you faintly remember those weekly newsletter emails from SFU or from your faculty that you scroll through or delete without a glance? Do you somewhat recall random brightly-coloured posters decorating any superfluous bulletin board or lamp post around campus? Going out of your way and attending events allows you to meet so many more people interested in the same thing! For example, going to a event on climate change downtown allowed me to connect with a city planner, who later invited me to a brunch-party where I met an amazing Harvard-law graduate working on some amazing sustainability initiatives across the pond at UBC who has been invaluable with helpful advice and as a daily inspiration. You never know what can come out of getting involved in things unless you try!
Making connections with people is so important! The people you know can provide different opportunities you might really want or need down the road. Make sure you exchange contact information or connect on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, or your preferred social media platform with the interesting people you meet! Whatever next you decide with these connections is entirely up to you.
Being sustainable might be difficult at times, especially when it can seem like there’s so much to do. That’s why making connections can make all the difference!