Save Our Shropshire

Community, Third Sector • Shropshire

SOS runs courses for householders, councils, parish and town council clerks and councillors, in conjunction with the Carbon Literacy Project, encouraging attendees to make personal and group pledges to reduce their carbon footprint.

  • Engaging people at country fair
  • Delivering climate education to households
  • Shropshire Council get Bronze award from Carbon Literacy Project

Our story

We knew that behaviour change was the most important ingredient in making change happen. We were determined in April 2021 to set up a charity, and by July had achieved charity status.

Meanwhile, we set up courses with the Carbon Literacy Project to help householders and Parish Town Councils understand what needed to change.

We launched these across Shropshire and found people welcomed the ideas, which centred on helping people to measure their carbon footprint and then take the required action (e.g. change diet, change energy source, improve insulation, change car, etc).

We have also helped Parish Councillors and Clerks extend their thinking on engaging the community and putting a plan together to tackle climate change in their community.

This approach through the education of Parish Councils is unique and we see that it will be transformative within our council.

We have also publicised our work through social media, and have now reached out to others beyond the county of Shropshire and in particular to the Society of Local Council Clerks (SLCC) for whom we are delivering courses.

We have also linked up with the two local councils (Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin) to engage them in the education process. T&W has just given us a grant of £ 10,000 to help educate householders in taking action. We will do this under the heading of "What is good for the planet is good for your pocket", demonstrating that people can save money by taking action on climate change. Behaviour change occurs when people understand the benefits of changing.

Local organisations like the voluntary sector, the Local Authority councils and the Shropshire Chamber of Commerce have all helped. The Shropshire Association of Local Councils has also provided excellent specialist help.

Our advice

Behaviour change is arguably the most important barrier to making climate change happen. Parish and Town Councils are in a unique position to influence changes within their community, but probably constrain themselves to limited activity.

When we started we set up a householder course. It was very difficult to engage householders directly, so we then pioneered a Parish and Town Council course, to foster a cascade education process.

One of our Trustees is the vice chair of the Shropshire Association of Local Councils, so he has engaged with the local councils, and brought them on board. This has allowed climate eduction to be spread across Shropshire.

We have also been out to local fairs and events to engage people and have engaged with the SLCC (Society of Local Council Clerks) as a result of connections through our local council. We presented at their annual conference last November.
We have also found it very useful to engage with VCSA (Shropshire Voluntary and Community Sector Assembly), which has connections with other voluntary organisations.

Education of the local council cabinet has also been very useful in extending our reach.

We were lucky to get initial funding from the National Lottery funding, which was a great first step.

It is important to have a clear vision and plan and focus on that plan to make sure you are getting there. Luck will help, but you can also make your own luck!

Our metrics

We measure the number of people that attend our courses, the number of pledges made and the tonnes of CO2 eq saved.

Feeling inspired? Discover more about this story...



Response to climate crisis

Mitigation & Adaptation




Community, Third Sector, less than 9 people

Shared by

Richard Watkins

Updated Feb, 2024

Recommended for you

  • Climate Friendly Bradford on Avon

    Climate Friendly Bradford on Avon

    Working in association with local organisations to become carbon neutral by 2030.

    Buildings & Places
  • Earth Cubs

    Earth Cubs

    Educating young children about climate, sustainability and the environment.

    Buildings & Places
  • Hay Community Assemblies

    Hay Community Assemblies

    Running community assemblies to make better decisions that serve the needs of all.

    Buildings & Places
  • NWG Innovation Festival
    Newcastle upon Tyne

    NWG Innovation Festival

    Finding innovative solutions to water industry challenges.

    Buildings & Places