In early 2023, we ran workshops at several community spaces so as to learn from each other and make energy saving improvements in the home.
Summary of project
During March and early April 2023, the Remakery was funded to deliver community workshops called Save your Pennies! Save the Planet! Showing community members how to save money with cost saving projects.
Participants gained a comprehensive understanding of their heating systems and identified areas of heat loss within their homes. They learnt practical strategies and techniques to optimise heating system efficiency, leading to reduced energy consumption and lower utility bills. Created draft excluders, learned how to use double glazing film, and constructed slow cooking boxes, which they were able to take home.
By reducing energy consumption, workshop participants actively contributed to a more sustainable future and helped them to understand reducing our carbon footprint. We hope they will continue to use these skills and tools in daily life. The strategies learned in the workshop will help participants save money on heating costs in the long term. Together, we are making a positive impact in creating more energy-efficient and comfortable homes while protecting the environment.
In our commitment to sustainability and reducing waste, the DIY workshop incorporated a strong reuse component. We made conscious efforts to upcycle and repurpose materials, contributing to a more environmentally friendly approach. Here’s a summary of the reuse aspect of the workshop:
- Draft Excluders: The draft excluders, essential for minimising heat loss, were crafted using reclaimed upholstery fabric. By repurposing this material, we gave new life to previously unused or discarded textiles. The filling of the draft excluders was sourced from old duvets, pillows, or upholstery foam, promoting the reuse of existing resources.
Slow Cooker Boxes: For the creation of slow cooker boxes, we utilised second-hand pillowcases, further extending the lifespan of these textile items. Similar to the draft excluders, the filling used in the slow cooker boxes was sourced from reclaimed materials such as old duvets, pillows, or upholstery foam. This approach ensured the efficient use of existing resources.
Sustainable Material Selection: While the main focus was on repurposing materials, certain items required for the workshop, such as the boxes for the slow cooker boxes, velcro tape, scissors, and sewing needles, needed to be new. However, these new items were carefully chosen to align with sustainability principles, prioritising longevity and recyclability.
By incorporating reused materials into the workshop, we reduced the demand for new resources, minimised waste generation, and promoted a circular economy mindset. Through these sustainable practices, we aimed to inspire participants to adopt similar approaches in their daily lives, fostering a culture of resourcefulness and environmental responsibility.
Summary of engagement
To maximise workshop attendance, we employed various methods of community engagement. Firstly, we utilised social media advertising on our platforms to reach a wider audience and generate interest. Additionally, we distributed flyers to local residents both within and beyond the Paulet Estate, aiming to directly engage with potential participants. We also spoke with residents individually, personally encouraging them to attend the workshops.
For the final four workshops, we formed partnerships with local community associations and utilised their spaces to hold sessions. This strategic approach allowed us to be closer to the community and benefit from the centre managers actively promoting the workshops.
During each workshop, a prepared PowerPoint presentation was used to demonstrate energy-saving examples and stimulate discussions among the participants. We placed a strong emphasis on participant engagement, ensuring that individuals felt comfortable sharing their thoughts, asking questions, and actively contributing to the discussions and activities. We fostered a collaborative learning environment, encouraging participants to work together and learn from one another’s experiences and perspectives.
Flexibility and adaptability were key factors in our engagement methods. The facilitators were able to tailor their approaches based on the demographics of the participants, ensuring the content and delivery resonated with their specific needs and preferences. By remaining responsive to participant feedback and incorporating their input, we strived to create a meaningful and relevant workshop experience.
Overall, our engagement methods encompassed community outreach, personal interactions, social media advertising, collaborative learning, and tailored approaches. These efforts aimed to attract and engage participants from diverse backgrounds and create an inclusive and interactive workshop environment.