Black & Green Ambassadors is a Bristol-wide programme with a mission to connect, empower, and celebrate diverse leadership and community action on environmental issues in Bristol and beyond. Through their work they are challenging perceptions, creating new opportunities, and working towards ensuring the environmental movement is inclusive and representative of all communities. The programme is co-delivered by Ujima Radio and Bristol Green Capital Partnership, of which Thrive is a member.
Black & Green Ambassadors was piloted in 2016 following Bristol’s year as European Green Capital. The first-of-its-kind project involved the training and development of environmental leaders from Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic backgrounds. Following a successful pilot, the programme secured funding from the National Lottery Community Fund to scale up the project, delivering it over three years. It is also being supported by a range of sponsors including Thrive. This enables the project to support nine new ambassadors and deliver an extensive programme to address environmental inequalities and enable bold and inclusive action towards a more sustainable Bristol.
Three new ambassadors were announced in September 2020, each with specific areas of interest. These include the cultural heritage and environmental insights of diverse communities, the environmental justice issue of air pollution, and equal access to green space. During the first six months, ambassadors have focussed on building connections, skills, and knowledge. Training in journalism and radio production has supported them to broadcast regular radio shows promoting environmental opportunities and amplifying equality issues. They have also developed individual community research and engagement projects. The ambassadors are building strong relationships with local organisations and taking part in speaking events, such as at London Climate Action Week and this month’s Communities Can conference hosted by the National Lottery’s Community Fund.
“People have responded with such warmth and enthusiasm to the re-launch of the Black and Green Ambassador Programme; I think it feels like something constructive and positive in what has been such a turbulent year in so many different arenas. I couldn’t feel prouder to be part of the programme and I can’t wait to see what we create over the coming years.” Roy Kareem – Black and Green Ambassador for Bristol
Moving forward the ambassadors will be running their community research and engagement projects to encourage stronger dialogue and engagement across Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic and environmental sustainability communities. Each will be focussed on their individual area of interest.
The ambassadors also run monthly radio shows on Ujima Radio at 10am on the last Thursday of the month. Their next show, on Thursday 25th March, will be focussed on renewable energy and the clean energy transition, and will feature Thrive’s Managing Director, Matthew Clayton. You can listen here.
“Thrive is proud to sponsor the Black & Green Ambassador initiative, and support their mission to empower new and diverse leaders to join the environmental movement. As a B Corp we are committed to continuous improvement and will continue working to make Bristol a greener, and fairer place” Matthew Clayton, Managing Director, Thrive Renewables