INSTITUTE OF FUNDRAISING: MEMBER VIEWPOINT - Doing our bit to save the earth is a project not to be frowned at

Ruth Weatherill, income generation and marketing cConsultant at Weatherill Consulting

In the past few weeks I have been struck by something of a bolt of lightening - my own road to Damascus, you might say. It all started when I decided to get some letterheads made for my new consultancy.

I thought I could do my bit for the planet and use recycled paper, or at least paper acknowledged to be from managed forests. Great idea, but putting it into practice proved to be impossible. I spent hours on the internet trying to find a printing company that offered eco-friendly printing.

Later the same week I was busy reading my copy of Third Sector when I read about Planet Ark and the anti-junk mail campaigns. It struck me that while we are all working so hard to make the world a better place, we should sometimes stop and look at the bigger picture. We have people trampling all over the country to our great events, but how many posters, fliers and mailers do we send out to get them there?

Don't get me wrong, I'm not some 'hippy bean-eater' (no offence, bean eaters) but it seems that if we in the third sector don't care about the bigger picture, who will?

As a fundraiser I could potentially do my bit to save the world, but maybe we should be thinking about what we should do to get there. What really surprises me is how little thought we give to what we do, and the impact it has on people around us and the world in general. Should we think about the impact of all that? Should we make the whole world our project or should we stick to our own little worlds?

Perhaps what I've learned is that I should at least give consideration to my planet and try to learn more about my impact upon it - and what I can do differently to help keep it safe.

Just a thought I wanted to share.

- The Institute welcomes Viewpoint articles from its members. Please email the membership manager (Membership@institute-of-fundraising.org.uk).

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