At cCHANGE, we know that people are the most important solution to climate and environmental challenges, because people are able to create change wherever they are. You matter more than you think!
My challenge
To give you new perspectives and guidance!

Dear Climate Justice Ambassadors,


In this last week we are visiting the personal sphere. The sphere of beliefs, worldviews, values, and qualities like courage. Although these are not often talked about when we think about solving sustainability challenges, these aspects are very important, because they influence attitudes and actions. They shape individual and collective “views” of systems and cultures, which can often explain the preferred strategies for practical transformations that emerge.


Shifts in perspectives in this sphere (or a-ha moments, as we like to call them at cCHANGE) can be powerful because they often lead to new perspectives on human-environment relationships. It was Ralph Waldo Emerson who said: “The mind, once stretched by a new idea, never returns to its original dimensions.” And that is what we hope to generate in these 30-days; some shifts in perspective around your role and your ability to create and contribute to solutions.


In the check in on Thursday, we touched on the topic of courage (see also the Day 21 coaching post). We reflected on our own relationship to courage, how it may be needed in «everyday» contexts where we want to shift patterns. And it is not only about protesting or activism necessarily. We talked about how courage is not the absence of fear, but the ability to act in spite of fear. When we are making changes in our lives and want to scale up change, courage is a quality we may need to tap into. Doing things differently can push us out of our comfort zones.


The conversation also touched on worldviews; coherent sets of values that persist across multiple generations. These large-scale value systems frame reality and provide identity. Unfortunately, many of the conflicts and polarisation we see in the world today, stem from clashing worldviews. Here is a link if you would like to know a bit more about worldviews.


Universal values are qualities that I want for myself and for all others on Earth, for example, equity, love, creativity, agency, etc. They can be a unifying and transcending force, when we activate them in the way we work and design strategies.


Finally, we looked at how limiting beliefs – patterns in the way we talk to ourselves – may hold us back and reduce our sense of agency sometimes and our ability to connect with our universal values. Each of us tried to identified limiting beliefs that we tend to use a lot in our own lives. (Visit the Day 24 coaching post to read more.)


It was a very inspiring session, thank you for your sharing and commitment!


We look forward to seeing what the final days of the challenge bring. If you didn’t make it to last week’s check in and are interested in viewing the recording, ask Alf for a copy.

Hi Climate Justice Ambassadors,


As we discussed in yesterday’s check-in, there are many systems around us that need to shift. It could be moving from linear, take-make-waste systems, to systems based on something more circular, nature-based, and even regenerative. Or shifts in the academic and capitalistic systems that would help us be more personally sustainable.


A great video that can get you thinking about systems is The Story of Stuff by Annie Leonard. She gives a great perspective on the systems around consumption and waste. One very important take-away from The Story of Stuff, is that systems usually deliver what they are designed to – whether consciously or unconsciously. That means if we want our systems to deliver different things, we have to design them differently.


We often think of systems as stuck in stone, as the way things are. But they aren’t, they can change, and they have! Just look at the changes in the last century. Our co-founder Karen O’Brien, wrote a piece about how thinking of climate change and the systems that are perpetuating it as relationship problem, might open up different ways of thinking about how we solve it.


Donella Meadows, quoted in the image above, was a leading systems thinker. She identified and ranked leverage points for systems change, places where a small change could have a big impact. Her powerful quote above identifies how some of the things which are valuable and important for a sustainable and equitable future, are not easy to define or measure in our current systems. But it is important that we keep trying. What kind of systems would you like?


I have pasted the chat from our check-in below.


Enjoy the last week! We are going to dive into the personal sphere – the world of values, beliefs and assumptions, mindsets, and worldviews.


Chat from check-in Week 3:
Leonie, cCHANGE: Talk about the systems around your challenge e.g. the policies, regulations, laws that support it or hinder it. Who do you think has the power to design or decide the systems?


Plenary discussion:
Shandin: A newsletter that I subscribe to that you might like: the Green Fix

Leonie, cCHANGE: Shandin shared this excerpt from that newsletter: How much time with our family and friends has been lost in favour of the office block? How much of myself – my time, energy, my fractured sleep – have I sacrificed for a system that I don’t even believe in? The days spent exhausted at a laptop screen, the burnout, the rankling inequality, the trail of last-minute takeaway plastic containers: we know this is not the world we promised our children. But we also know how to leave it behind. Follow the solutions and all roads lead to climate justice. We must surrender. We must untangle ourselves from a life driven by earning and extracting and tailoring our LinkedIn profiles. Like breathing out, when you cut yourself loose from the capitalist rat race, suddenly everything is easier. Suddenly we have Enough. Suddenly there is time. In a green and just world, we have time. In a green and just world, we are satisfied. In a green and just world, we are free.

Keri Facer: Caring for yourself as an act of radical resistance – it’s from Audre Lorde – who is amazing.

Lauren Hennessy: But be careful because the capitalist system will try and sell self-care back to you 😉

Shandin: Tim Jackson also talks about the issue of time in capitalism and the issue of productivity driving all of us, even in fields like education and health care:

Shandin: Good point Lauren. For me, it is spending time outside, not plugged into anything. 🙂


Shandin: Please if you are happy to share, can you send 20 or so words about your challenge and a photo for the UoB Sustainability team to promote this effort by the School community 🙂
Shandin: And get other Schools to do it!



Yesterday in our check-in we reflected a bit about:

– switching off our autopilot and observing ourselves and what we do.

– habit change and what it has been like to try and introduce a new habit in our lives.

– culture and cultural norms around us. Which is the focus of this week.


Culture and norms can be so powerful in either supporting our change or holding it back. They are all around us and they are also often invisible, like the air we breathe. As the quote above by David Foster Wallace demonstrates.


Using the observational skills we practiced in Week 1, we can observe some of the cultural norms, conversations, and shared stories around us at home, with friends or colleagues, and reflect on them and how supportive they are for helping us create sustainable and equitable change. Do they help or do they make it harder?


Here is the chat from our check-in yesterday. Get in touch if you would like to request the recording:


Shandin: Yay! I got my first [Milk and More] order this morning 😀

Shandin: I have been talking to the central UoB Sustainability team and they would like to share the story of what we are doing – so if people are willing to work with me on sharing a few photos and testimonial statements that you are happy for them to put in their social media and newsletter, etc that would be fantastic!

Alf Coles: @Shandin – that would be brilliant to share stories, I hope others will contact you and help with this!


Leonie, cCHANGE: In breakout rooms, talk about what you have learnt about yourself in relation to changing your habits and turning off autopilot, and what your family and friends think about your challenge.


Plenary chat:

Maria Pulman: Being sustainable in a way that is also sustainable for you personally
Alison Oldfield: Me too! Got my first milk delivery this morning, inspired by others 🙂
Francesca Mahon: What was the dog food brand called please?
Heidi Arctander: Harringtons
Caroline Falzon: does this work for cats too?

How many people do you think you have influenced or inspired with this challenge so far:
James He/Him: 5
Maria Pulman: Hopefully at least a couple!
Michelle Graffagnino: Hopefully more than 10…
William Browne: got to go – apologies – hopefully a few
Leonie, cCHANGE: I think around 10
Shandin: a handful…
Francesca Mahon: 5..ish!
Reuben: a few!
Karolina Bacinska: I think at least 2
Emilie Enslen: 5 ish
Michael Rumbelow: not many yet

Shandin: Amazing Michelle!
Emilie Enslen: I’m sorry I have to leave earlier but it was great chatting with everyone! Thank you!
Reuben: Sorry I have to go! Lovely seeing and hearing from you all!
Francesca Mahon:
Michael Rumbelow: Good

To Shandin:
Michelle Graffagnino: i’m willing to share
Celia Tidmarsh: Me too
Maria Pulman: Me too
Sze Wan Maggie Ma (CC): Sure happy to try
Elias Sandoval: will do!
Michael Rumbelow: sure


Hi all, Great check-in today. Here is the chat file below with different links. The image is from the Summary of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Changes report on Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability which was published this week and places climate justice at the centre: (

Breakouts – 10 mins
Leonie, cCHANGE:
What I have learnt about myself – could touch on:
• What challenge you have chosen and why?
• How it is going so far?
• Have you noticed any changes in your patterns, how has it felt?
• Has anything surprised you?
• Logistical or practical challenges you have faced?
• Have you got put in place any tools or strategies to support you?


Reflections in plenary:
Alastair: I have to leave for a class, but thank you and see you next week!
Alison Oldfield: A different kind of circular economy 🙂


Link to Climate Justice and the school:
naomi: could you send a link to that IPCC report please?
Michelle Graffagnino: has climate justice at their heart
link where you can download full report/individual chapters for IPCC 2022 report
naomi: thanks! =)
Reuben: – pdf link for full report
Alison Oldfield: Session with authors of IPCC report on march 10th, sign up here:
Leonie: Summary for Policy makers:


Other reflections:
Alf Coles: I’ve been really inspired by all the posts so far!
Lauren Hennessy: Just that it’s great reading everyone’s posts! 🙂
William Browne: Apologies got to go to next meeting
Alison’s post about shriving and this challenge and agency when we are feeling powerless:
Alison Oldfield: Was very serendipitous!
James He/Him: Heard about this on radio.
Keri Facer: Thanks James – looks great
Leonie, cCHANGE: Write a post if you haven’t already:
Michelle Graffagnino: Thank you. Could I have a copy of the original manifestation we did? (see the post on the platform by cCHANGE:



In this post I am sharing the combined results that came out of both of our workshops earlier in March.


Visions of the future we want:

Workshop 1

– Crisp, clean, strong sense of community (like in Cheers), working together for something, different kinds of people, clean vision of the Earth, crystal colours
– Cleanliness and vivid colour
– Respect and regard for nature, coexistence between man and nature, recycling, individual steps leading to collective to international steps, people knew had role to play and doing their roles, nature shining, trees greener, sun shining, nature appreciates our actions
– A slower pace of life; a city that does not flood when it rains; a sense of pride in what we had done as a human species.
– In our streets and towns, we didn’t visualise cars and technology, but rather people interacting in person, not mediated by screens.
– Tension there – thinking what might a sustainable future really look like e.g., the cars, the technology?


Workshop 2
– People have more time, are more creative, they have more time to be creative. Time to connect through joy, as opposed to struggle.
– No cars.
– Shared visions of things being green, great fresh air, no air and noise pollution, birds and insects dominant noises.
– People talk to each other more, come together and share more than now.
– Imagine far fewer things in our houses than today – less consumption.
– More colours, less pollution.
– More sustainable packaging.
– Much better public transport – don’t need 1 or 2 cars to get places.
– Generally happier more relaxed people.


The problem(s) – what are they and how do we see them showing up?

Workshop 1
– Climate anxiety in children
– Seeing mounds of rubbish on the streets around where I work – it really makes my cross
– Seeing people not recycle items that could be recycled!
– Severe natural disasters happening more often
– Economic system – generating wealth for some whilst creating problems for others
– Lack of commitment from everyone although we are all in the same situation
– I think there should be more high-level investment in research on renewable energy and of course not forgetting the recycling and waste from renewable energy equipment
– The fact that plastic products are always cheaper and more available than sustainable alternatives
– I work as a secondary supply cover. Invariably when I ask students about climate change they focus on, as Alf put it, the meteorological issues, a biophysical discourse. In honesty, until I recently started the climate change in education course at Bristol Uni, I probably came from a similar, hard sciences perspective, thinking STEM could solve all. I realise now how woefully inadequate that and the current teaching in the curriculum is. Why is it these issues are trusted to adults and uni students, but not to school children?
– I see a lot of disconnection between people and nature playing out on various scales and in various contexts. And between different groups of people across the world.
– Personally, a big problem I see is social inertia. People are afraid of change, people believe that their actions alone cannot account for big change and that leads to cultural trauma. In reality, it is these small steps that amount to the big change we all need.
– Land grab and pollution in poor areas
– We have to reduce consumption in the first place
– Climate education in schools not addressing the multifaceted nature of the problem or giving ways of meaningful action
– Also education in how to change in ways that make a difference
– Can be hard to challenge culture of progress based on unending growth, has impact on many facets of life
– Exam specifications need to change to reflect the above in including climate change education
– Can be difficult to understand and ‘see’ the extractive processes that our lives are tied into
– As a Geography teacher educator, I see many teachers wanting to tackle climate change but feeling hampered by the way schools are measured re exam results so the comment re: exam specs from Michelle is very pertinent…
– Abstractness of communications about what is happening e.g., 1.5 degrees, market forces, people feeling it doesn’t matter to other people, loss of sense of natural cycles as meaningful and sacred
– But also, we are up against opposition at a higher level – see the article published today in the Guardian about government action in process to raise concerns about tackling ‘political’ topics (


Workshop 2
– Embedded unsustainable practice of food, transport etc
– Human relations disconnected from other beings – our sense of the world as ‘objects’ separate from us
– Lack of connection and attention between humans and between humans and non/more-than humans
– Capitalism!
– In terms of education, curriculum overhaul is needed and is still so far off – why are we not training new generations with the skills they need for the future that awaits them?
– The careless and all consuming attitude of society, unsustainable approaches and habits have become so normal they’re ignored
– Finance systems investing in planet unfriendly practices
– Overconsumption, transport , lack of community bonds, lack of education
– Technology and modern world has increased expectation. Need to slow down lots of things. Feeling of burning out with the planet.
– Convenience and consumption driven habits and culture
– Loss of space for more-than-human nature and loss of quality environment for humans (especially those most disadvantaged economically and socially and globally)
– Too much trash generation, leading to high product demand and heating generation
– Disconnect from our food – what it is, how it grows, how to grow it with the natural world rather than destroying habitats for agriculture



What systems and cultural norms need to shift to take us from the problems to the future we envision?

Workshop 1

– Changing things e.g., like how and where I recycle. There is a difference between home and work. At work under pressure and buy packaged lunches and not so conscious of recycling. Want to be sustainable at work.
– Cut down use of car for short journeys – walk more for short journeys
– At society level – I come from Nigeria and want to see a shift from generalized solutions and conversations about climate change and sustainability, where focus can be on irrelevant things for Nigeria like emissions. We need proper recycling, waste bins for different things.
– Personally, I have to shift doing my little things e.g., taking reusable bags to shop, to educating others. Then they end up helping others and we end up with a bigger change.
– Group of geography teachers, we want to shift to a two-way process – from university to school and from school-youth to university. Need to hear student voices. Develop networks where there are two-way process between schools and universities.
– Local (personal) scale – From single-use coffee cups TO using reusable coffee cups
– From biophysical –> integrative discourse at curriculum level. Empowering teachers to educate from a holistic and cross-curricular perspective, also to deal with climate anxiety experienced by students. Acknowledging that this conversation is currently limited to particular social groups.


Workshop 2
– This! – this group we have now is creating this change – we are already changing. Have support. Ambassadors in school. Maybe it will be greater than the sum of its parts.
From individuals to building supporting structure around interest that exists.
– Waste, food waste, focus on the university and things that can change at university policy level. Heard that the zero waste shop (a service reusing furniture has been around for 10 years). Do we need promotion to improve awareness of these things? From things being invisible to communicating what exists, the success stories.
– Thinking about glass milk bottles – leads me to remember that there were systems in place that we can recover. Don’t have to invent these systems from scratch.
– Talking about the university, there is a policy. Bristol Uni was the first to declare a climate emergency. The culture has to come from the top. Personally, felt a bit frustrated that things aren’t going as fast as they should. But Maria reminded me that Bristol seems to be a lot more proactive. We talked about the School, we have quite a lot of plants. We made the decision to change the catering to no meat. But we have a building that uses a lot of energy that goes out windows because of the age and nature of the building. I experience tension and frustration, because individually you can make small changes but not counteracted by bigger things not resolved.
– Education, HK campus – We found it quite tricky to think about structural change and possibilities for it but we discussed things like milk in the school, also curriculum change, integrating thinking about climate change, climate justice and ecological justice into everything we do – mainstreaming it into decision making (though nothing specific).
– Not to mention – the Hong Kong campus and flights associated with this



Values that are important for us:




Welcome to the Climate Justice Challenge!


We’re so excited that you’re participating in this 30-day challenge, an experiment with change.


By making one small change in your own life, you will learn more about the connections between individual change, collective change, and climate justice.


Spend the next 30 days observing, reflecting, exploring, and talking to others about your change experiment.


Use this platform to share thoughts, stories, images and even YouTube videos.


Click on the Write icon above to start posting.


Be inspired by reading other participants’ posts and write a comment underneath their post to encourage them.


Week 1 is about choosing your challenge and preparing. Good luck!


If you have technical issues or questions, contact us: [email protected].