Gold Award Winners
We recently held our first ever Environmental Achievement Awards. The awards were held to celebrate members of the community who are doing their bit to protect our planet. We had lots of wonderful nominations to sort through and we had some very difficult decisions to make.
Find out all about the Gold Award winners below.
Our first Gold Award went to a Maria Martin, who for the past 3 years has been tackling a certain waste issue that not everybody thinks about. Something that’s even better than recycling is reusing, and that’s exactly what Maria is trying to achieve with the Ashford Cloth Nappy Library.
She voluntarily gives up her time and funds to provide trial kits which allows families to try first before buying. She also provides valuable information to families who are looking replacing their disposable nappies and improving their environmental impact.
In the past 12 months she has lent out approximately 65 kits which equates to 150,000 disposable nappies ending up in our general waste bin. Over the past few years this has expanded into the South East Reusables, recruiting new volunteers and reaching more people, whilst also tackling issue such as reusable wipes and menstrual products.
The next Gold Award went to Kati Ramsden who became frustrated that she couldn’t go shopping in Ashford without being faced with an abundance of packaging and unnecessary plastic. So she decided to do something about it and take the matter into her own hands.
As a result, Bare Bazaar, a plastic-free specialist food shop, was opened in Park Mall. The shop stocks everything from essential grocery items to household cleaners and even personal hygiene necessities, providing an affordable, accessible way for people to shop for what they need without the plastic packaging. All you do in turn up with your own containers and weigh your items!
Through starting this business, Kati has supplied the people of Ashford with a more environmentally-friendly way to shop.
The final Gold Award of the evening went to Aniko Szocs, a resident who is always thinking about the environment. Aniko is on a mission to make Ashford a better place. Having founded the environmental group Keep Ashford Clean, she organises regular litter picks in Victoria Park and beyond, to make the borough a safer and cleaner place for everyone to enjoy.
Aniko has also founded Plastic Free Ashford, a community group who are tackling the issues of plastic pollution. One of the group’s long term goals is for Ashford to gain plastic-free status. Aniko is also a volunteer for Friends of Singleton Lake and works tirelessly to help members of the public with environmental problems or queries.
Between rallying to make her parish council paperless and circling dog mess with chalk as a part of a dog waste campaign she dedicates many hours and a lot of dedication and energy for the environment.
A big congratulations to all our winners!