Greenshoots Green Campus Programme at UCC

Green Shoots Green Campus

Greenshoots Programme - What is it all about?

 The Greenshoots programme focuses on student engagement with green spaces on campus, in addition to climate action and sustainability, for the benefit of students' wellbeing and the environment of which they are a part. UCC's Greenshoots Green Campus Coordinator Irene Ní Shúilleabháin appointed to the role in January 2023, will collaborate with students to encourage greater awareness of the benefits of green spaces amongst the student community. It is hoped that the Greenshoots programme will lead to an increase in the number of students using campus green spaces to improve their wellbeing, in addition to adopting and championing pro-environmental behaviours (highlighting issues such as sustainable food production, biodiversity conservation and holistic solutions to environmental problems.





Greenshoots Changemakers training

Greenshoots Changemakers training took place on the 13th of Feb.

Greenshoots Changemakers is a student-led programme which empowers participants to take tangible actions in their communities to foster a culture of nature connection, and combat environmental crises, through an intersectional lens. Those registered for the Greenshoots Changemakers programme will be supported by the Greenshoots team to realise their ambitions for a better world and gain an Employagility Award in the process.

During the training session, participants had the opportunity to learn from Greenshoots Interns about connecting with nature and growing food on campus, intersectional environmentalism, and how effective communication can be a driver for change; all while building their confidence and enjoying free pizza! Many thanks to UCC SU for their collaboration and support.

By participating in the training, attendees gained perspectives on the unique skill sets and knowledge of each of the interns, creating a support link for students to take tangible action relating to climate, nature connection, and biodiversity on campus, whether big or small.

Green Week 2024 Reflections

Green Week this year took place from the 19th – 22nd of March at UCC. Our students put an incredible amount of work and commitment into the week’s events, with UCC Environmental Society, UCC Students Union and UCC Green Campus being key players. Student societies involved included UCC Knit Society, Global Justice Society, Chemical Society, Historical Society, International Relations Society, Women in Business & Leadership Society, and SÁMH Society. UCC Clubs & Societies team and UCC CUBS also got involved. A full list of the Week’s events is available here (UCC Sámh Society’s mediation session in collaboration with Greenshoots Changemakers was added later).

Green Campus Greenshoots Coordinator, Irene Ní Shúilleabháin, and Greenshoots Interns Ella, Ava and Dearbhla, worked hard to make Green Campus Green Week events as enjoyable and inclusive as possible. Dearbhla provided coverage of most of the week’s events – no mean feat when completing final year!

A Tuesday highlight was the “Be a Climate Voter,” panel. This event invited local politicans to speak to students and staff about their position on environmental issues. The panelists were questioned by activists Saoi O’ Connor and Jessica Dunne. Their responses were diverse and insightful.

Wednesday morning involved a walk along UCC’s new Biodiversity Trail on the Cavanagh Way, guided by Irene. Participants were given an insight into wildlife local to the area, habits of local flora and fauna, and identification tips.

A clothing upcycling session facilitated by FASH Forward took place in the Hub’s Maker Space in the afternoon, with several items of clothing given a new lease of life.

Wednesday also included a free bike repair workshop as part of a collaboration between UCC’s Environmental Society and the Greenshoots Sustainable Skills Series. The day concluded with a Climate and Eco-grief café co-facilitated by UCC Global Justice Society. This provided UCC students and staff with the opportunity to share their feelings around current environmental crises in a non-judgmental, compassionate space. The indoor sharing session was followed by a walk along the River Lee, adjacent to UCC’s North Mall campus, during which we explored how nature can sustain and restore us.

Thursday opened with a treasure hunt facilitated by UCC Women in Business and Leadership Society, supported by CUBS, in collaboration with UCC Green Campus. Participating students followed a series of clues which took them around UCC’s green spaces in search of answers. Winners were awarded with vegan, Fair Trade Easter eggs provided by Exploding Tree, a Clonakilty-based cholocatier, and vouchers provided by CUBS.

Thursday’s Green Campus meeting involved poster making in advance of a climate protest which took place on Friday 22nd. This was a great way to incorporate this style of activism into Green Campus activities. Green Campus collaborations on Thursday concluded with a planting and meditation session in UCC’s Community Garden, organised by UCC Sámh Soc., Greenshoots Changemakers Radisha and Brian, and Greenshoots Garden Intern, Ella. 

Thank you to Dearbhla, Ella and Ava for all your hard work during Green Week, and to UCC’s incredible students and staff for making this celebration of commitment to climate action such a special occasion.

Office of Sustainability and Climate Action

An Oifig um Inbhuanaitheacht agus Gníomhú ar son na hAeráide

G.08 North Wing, Main Quadrangle, University College Cork, Western Road, Cork T12 K8AF,