Here’s an interview with the founders of a new organisation, CircularCityMcr.
Who are you guys? How long have you been in Manchester? Did you “come for uni and then stayed” like almost everyone else?
Circular City MCR is a Manchester based organisation which promotes planet friendly events. The main drivers behind the project are Agathe and Lisa; a small team of collaborators also support the project by helping to curate a brilliant selection of things to do. We have proudly launched this May and we hope to grow in the next couple of months!
Get to know Agathe: After 4 years in Manchester, I often still find myself in awe of the creativity and resilience of the people here. There are so many individuals who face into their climate change concerns and truly build a more liveable future. I am incredibly excited that Circular City MCR will bring more attention to them. On a personal note, I am on a plastic free journey so you will probably find me at zero waste events!
Get to know Lisa: As a geographer, being sustainable and finding ways to look after our planet has always been important to me. Co-founding Circular City MCR provided a perfect opportunity to increase awareness of green events and initiatives, whilst making a difference to Manchester. I really enjoy meeting people who are actively engaged in making our city a better place for all. You are likely to find me at Green Community events!
What was the impetus behind Circular City MCR? What is it trying to achieve? What are your plans/hopes over the coming months?
Here at Circular City MCR, we realise that many Mancunians care about their impact on the planet. Yet, leading an environmentally conscious social life is not as easy as it may seem. The great news is that there is no shortage of green things to do in Manchester – you just need to know where to look! Circular City MCR is all about giving planet friendly events in Manchester the spotlight they deserve.
You might wonder how this all shapes up? We provide a consistent centralised feed of exciting things to do on our website (www.circularcitymcr.com) and a curated feed on our social media (@circularcitymcr). Circular City MCR covers 4 types of events across the 10 Manchester boroughs.
1. Reduce Impact – A collection of green things to do: clean ups, tree planting, new sustainable shops and lots more!
2. Repair & Recycle – Access a world of sustainable items! Find everything you need by repairing your own or finding second hand gems.
3. Food & Drink – Who says being planet friendly can’t be tasty? Fruit picking, vegan cooking classes, local food festivals and more
4. Green Community – Drinks, workshops, lectures… Meet like minded people and change Manchester!
At its core, Circular City MCR serves as a reminder that our consumer choices create a demand for more of the same. We think it is time to generate a real demand for planet friendly events. Over the upcoming months we will be increasing our marketing in an effort to reach a wider audience.
Is it connected to any circular economy projects (like the Ellen Macarthur Foundation), or is it free-standing?
Circular City MCR is currently free standing. The name refers back to the concept of circular economy because that is our vision for the city we live in. For us, going circular means rejecting the “throw away” culture and reducing our impact on our environment. We aspire to bring together like minded people to increase the demand for a more circular Manchester – a city where being planet friendly is the new normal.
How can people get involved? What sorts of skills and knowledge are you looking for?
If you fancy joining our team, we are after bloggers! We are looking for people who have an eye for planet friendly events, who are genuinely passionate about the cause and have great written skills. We are quite flexible, you can either specialise in a Manchester borough or a type of event (i.e. Reduce Impact, Repair & Recycle, Food & Drink and Green Community). Get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to discuss further!
In the near future we hope to associate with event organisers to create incentives and make the events even more appealing to the curious. Email us via email@example.com if you are interested in partnering up.
Over the last few months there’s been a surge in activity on climate change, both nationally and locally. How do you think the momentum and morale can be sustained over the summer?
We have definitely observed an increase in the national concern around the climate crisis. Whilst it is absolutely critical that momentum isn’t lost, it is also important that eco-anxiety does not take over either. Often the sheer size of the challenge ahead of us seems too daunting to tackle. Here at Circular City MCR, we encourage Manchester to remember that action is the only remedy to despair. Action can mean marching in protest, but it can also mean supporting truly sustainable businesses, starting a zero waste journey, buying from local farms, caring for the local wildlife, donating to causes and so much more! Whether you give your time, your money or your voice, the key is to not stand idle.
Anything else you’d like to say?
Together, we can raise the profile of planet friendly things to do in Manchester. Please share the word! Find us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram (@circularcitymcr) and our website (www.circularcitymcr.com).