Why should you do the RED Sustainable Action Award?

Green RED Sustainable Action Award logo

The RED Sustainable Action Award is a skills award which allows you to increase your awareness of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. These are a set of 17 goals which aim to transform our world.

I chose to complete the award as I wanted to challenge myself to find out more about sustainability issues in the world and what I can do about them, however small the impact. All students should do the RED Sustainable Action Award since it helps motivate you to get actively involved with sustainability and gives you awareness of opportunities you wouldn’t otherwise know about.

Future employers will be impressed by students that take the initiative to complete the award and the skills that they gain along the way.

The award requires 40 hours of either acquiring or demonstrating knowledge about sustainability. For example, I acquired knowledge by undertaking an online Future Learn course, ‘Planet Partners: tackling the climate crisis together’, about how to tackle the climate crisis and make cities more sustainable. To act on the things I learnt I visited the Knepp Estate, a large rewilding project in the UK, and assisted with surveys to measure biodiversity there.

From the award, I discovered how much more there is to sustainability than I first realised. For example, ‘Climate Action’ is just one of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. I hadn’t thought about well-being and gender equality within a sustainability context before, but had regarded them as separate topics when in reality they all link together.

There are a lot more opportunities to make a difference than I realised, including volunteering opportunities available in Reading, and possible careers within the sustainability sector which I was previously unaware of.

I would highly recommend taking sustainable action, even if you think an action is small and won’t make a difference, it only takes one person to start a chain reaction of change. Acting sustainably helps contribute to the wider community and the health of the planet. Even minor changes can have a positive impact.


Author: Jessica Sams 

Jessica Sams is a second year Zoology student at the University of Reading.