This Year we’re launching Bi-Weekly (non-accidental bi connotation intended <3) Friday wins! We thought you should know what we’re up to, thank you for taking your time to read this!
Freshers’ was so good and busy! I am really happy I’ve had the opportunity to meet so many of you, to see many returning familiar faces – hope this year is your most creative one yet!
I’ve been working on a few things so far, check them our below:
I recently took over the International Student Assembly, which I was really excited and passionate about. It started last year and the VP Surrey worked on the International Student Guide that got published on our website.
I wanted to create a place for international and EU students to come together and talk about issues they experienced when first arriving into the UK, how to deal with homesickness and how to acclimatise well to the new environment. I went to all four campuses last week and was able to engage with Farnham and Epsom students, I got feedback and are planning to host more sessions soon, keep your eye out on the Freshers’ pages and on my Facebook profile. #YAY
Did you notice the £3.50 pot meal options? Now every single campus has introduced them as a cheaper alternative to the £5.00 plates you can grab at lunch. This is a result of a campaign I led during Freshers’ gathering data of how much you were willing to pay for your lunch at the canteen. There’s also a lot more vegetarian/ vegan options than before! The newest addition to canteens are now allergy advice sheets which specify what each item and dish contains. If you wanna check what the cakes contain you can ask the staff, they made a folder that specifies everything in detail! #YAY
Oh, you’re still reading J? Good, that gives me the opportunity to tell you that it’s THE LAST DAY you can nominate yourself to run in elections for Campus Executive Officer (FE, HE and open place) or NUS Delegate!!! Are you interested in getting more involved with our SU or perhaps you want to get involved with Student Politics on a national level? All you need is charisma, uniqueness, nerve and a campaign!
It’s also your last chance to fill out the Gender Recognition Act 2004 Reform to help out your trans friends and family when they’re legally changing their gender. This reform is asking questions about the current process which is really long and is exclusionary, especially to trans people who don’t experience gender dysphoria. Please spend about 10min filling it out, it’s really a game changer! It closes at 11PM so you’ve got all the time to do it!
What else do I care about? The environment!!! Have you heard that the government confirmed to put in place a “deposit return scheme” for single use drink containers such as plastic, glass and aluminium. This initiative has been already introduced in Sweden, Germany and countries like Belgium have introduced this as an option. It looks like reverse vending machines, where you slide bottles into a hole that takes it into a storage, weighs your bottle/ can and calculates how much it will give you back for it (would depend on material and thickness etc rather than brand). In bigger cities like Edinburgh, Manchester and Birmingham Tesco has introduced such machines that give back 10p/bottle and takes bottles up to a maximum of 750ml. How exciting is this project?
Talking about environment, I’m attending the Environmenstrual Festival in London today. It’s hosted by Women’s Environmental Network, where there will be discussion panels and talks about period poverty, menstrual health, disposal of menstrual products, reusable and biodegradable menstrual products, smash the taboo and menstrual equity, they are also hosting a “Seeing Red” Fashion show.
I'm really excited to be able to go and participate in question panels to find out more about how disposable menstrual products impact our bodies, and how we can minimise negative effects for ourselves and for the environment. It's important that we recognise periods should not be a stigma. Someone who doesn't experience regular periods or any period at all is no less a woman. Trans men who menstruate are men. Periods don't define us as people - they're a natural physical process.