Case study: Gemma & the Gentoo residents & EcoTeams
Gemma Carrick & the Gentoo residents
Inspired by a colleague at work, Gemma Carrick decided to recruit her EcoTeam from among the older people that she works with in her job as a Support Co-ordinator in four multistorey tower blocks in Sunderland.
The Green Machines
Calling themselves ‘the Green Machines’, her 25-strong team of Gentoo residents ranges in age from 59 to 84.
Aware that older people can be more set in their ways, Gemma is especially proud of the way the team has taken on board the messages around recycling.
Small changes make a big difference
She says that previously when the recycling bin at the tower block was full, the residents would just throw their rubbish down the normal rubbish chute – but now they make straight for her office to ask her to ring the council to chase up a fresh recycling bin.
To re-inforce the messages around growing your own, Gemma initiated a project to grow the tallest sunflower – with the winner getting a £50 B&Q voucher. One hundred and forty older people have signed up to take part.
Sustainable way of life
She’s now looking forward to the 1st of June when she’ll be helping run a Big Green Lunch. One hundred and six older tenants (some with significant disabilities) will be taking part and Gemma is sure her ‘Green Machines’ will soon win over lots more converts to a more sustainable way of life.