Sunday 22nd April was a big day in the YHA calendar! Not only were our team of runners pounding the pavements of London during the warmest ever London Marathon, in the north of England, hostels across the region were celebrating World Earth Day. Earth Day is an annual event celebrated on April 22, where worldwide, various events are held to demonstrate support for environmental protection.
For YHA, this meant a number of initiatives across the north. Hostels collaborated with their local communities to plan a local ‘green’ event and then finished the evening with live acoustic music to thank volunteers for their efforts during the day. This is a further step towards YHA attempting to improve its environmental sustainability, following on from initiatives such the removal of plastic straws from our hostels and the switch from plastic to cardboard membership cards.
Here’s a flavour of the green activities which took place:
YHA Eskdale: Staff at YHA Eskdale organised a beach clean on the Cumbrian coast at nearby Tarn Bay. The event was attended by over 30 other people from the local community, who all worked together to clear this stretch of beach, ending up with more than a tractor trailer full of rubbish.
YHA Borrowdale: The Borrowdale team organised a clean-up of their local river, followed by bird fatball making, leaf printing and poem recitals, with excellent live music from singer-songwriter Jack Rosies.
YHA Liverpool: Team Liverpool combined Contrast Mural Festival and World Earth Day to clear rubbish from their local area and had some amazing artists show off their skills in the area surrounding the hostel. Music was enjoyed here too, from young musician Ben Williams.
YHA Grasmere: The Grasmere team organised litter picks in the local area, hosted treasure hunts and decorated reusable bags to continue their efforts to reduce plastic usage.
YHA Boggle Hole: The ever-creative team at Boggle Hole enjoyed a family beach clean, and then wooden boat building for the kids (how cool is that!). The day continued with an evening of relaxation and a session of candlelit yoga, before a musical performance from local band, Fekla.
YHA Honister Hause: The team at Honister enjoyed perhaps the day’s highest litter pick at a heady 1,188 feet! A small but highly motivated team worked to rid the area of rubbish.
YHA Ambleside: The stunning setting of YHA Ambleside formed the backdrop of a lake clean up, both on land and on kayak, giving the day an extra sense of adventure! The evening saw entertainment from singer-songwriter Charlie Hole.
YHA Haworth: Staff from YHA Haworth teamed up with members of the community to clear the local park of litter.
YHA York: Volunteers at YHA York embarked on a litter pick in the area immediately surrounding the hostel, which was followed by a crafts session, before a live music performance later in the evening from folk singer Tom Van Wren.
All in all, the day was a success, and one to be proud of. It was brilliant to see people pulling together to make a positive difference and to set an example within their local community. Thanks to everyone who took part and helped to make it happen.