sUStain: transforming climate concerns into Active Hope
sUStain is a pioneering new climate anxiety project, which provides support for adults and young people, in partnership with UEA, the Climate Psychology Alliance (CPA), The Resilience Project and other partners.
The project started in March 2022. We offer a range of support around eco-anxiety and climate grief. These include:
- Awareness events to normalise concerns
- Monthly 'Climate Cafe' drop ins co facilitated by UEA students where feelings and thoughts can be shared
- A 6 week programme based on mindfulness and elements of the Active Hope approach (following the best selling book Active Hope: How to face the mess we are in with Unexpected Resilience and Creative Power by Resilience expert Chris Johnstone and eco-philosopher Joanna Macy).
What is Active Hope? The Active Hope element of this approach, is radical in that it does not require us to feel hopeful to take action, or paradoxically, to focus on the outcome. This frees us to try new, creative ways to resolve issues. We can use gratitude, mindfulness and a whole range of resilience practices to resource us to do this.
There are also opportunities for group participants to be mentored to continue run their own Active Hope book groups.
More about Climate Cafe's
Climate cafes offer a friendly, facilitated space to talk about how you are feeling about the climate emergency over a hot or cold drink and some cake. Talking with like-minded others can help us find, or revive, our agency and compassionate resourcefulness, rather than leaning into despair, shame and helplessness.
- Monthly Climate cafes at University of East Anglia (UEA)
- Monthly Climate Cafes in Norwich now take place at Norwich Millennium Library
- Climate Cafes- North Norfolk
Get involved with the project as a volunteer!
There will be more exciting opportunities available for students at UEA to volunteer with this project.
We are looking for student volunteers to take an active role in steering the sUStain project, co-designing workshops and helping to run climate anxiety cafes. Research has shown that giving yourself agency within climate anxiety can improve your own wellbeing, as well as benefiting others you are supporting. And there are also opportunities to continue aspects of the project into the future.
For more information about the project and opportunities available please download the link below.
Coffee & Geography - Georamblings
Kit chats to Rebecca Nestor & Caroline Fernandez about tacking climate anxiety, active hope through conversations, knitting, TV box sets amongst other things!
Rebecca is a climate activist and climate psychologist, and a recovering doctoral student at the University of Essex. She works mostly through the Climate Psychology Alliance, where she is on the board of directors and lead on climate cafes, but also a freelance organisational consultant and facilitator. Rebecca’s work is about supporting those facing the climate crisis. She lives in Oxford and regularly splashes about in the Thames.
Caroline is Project Coordinator for sUStain. She is a networker, food grower, environmentalist and chirpy ex Londoner, now living in Norfolk. Eldest of eight siblings, Caroline loves to travel the world through food, loves speaking German, and has family in India.