Sustainability in Clubs and Associations: Acting Green Together with Reusable Products

Especially clubs as non-profit organizations are urged to implement environmentally friendly concepts. The small financial budget often seems to be a hindrance. Upon closer inspection, however, it becomes clear that the commitment to more sustainability does not have to be expensive and even offers many advantages. This also includes the use of reusable tableware, which can prove particularly useful for camping, club kitchens, or events such as camps or festivals. Below are some cost-effective and climate-friendly inspirations on the topic of sustainability for clubs and associations.

Implementing Sustainability in Clubs and Associations

The concept of sustainability is based on the three equally important pillars of social, economic, and ecological aspects, whose individual goals should be implemented equally. Social focuses on people, the economy represents economic goals and business actions, and the ecological area includes the preservation of natural resources. Clubs, as non-profit organizations, play an important role in society and are therefore encouraged to participate in the effort for more sustainability. They create a community of like-minded people in various areas of life. Art and culture, special hobbies, animals, vehicles, and social criticism – the thematic spectrum of clubs is broad, allowing all people to participate. Clubs promote communicative exchange, often pursuing a specific goal. The selfless purpose is a prerequisite for acting as a non-profit organization since clubs are not allowed to make profits.

The Budget in Clubs and Associations

Especially the low financial cushion is often the crucial point when it comes to the realization of new projects and purchases in the context of integrating more sustainability. Economically, clubs should also be sustainably oriented so that they can operate risk-free in the long term. Often, membership fees are the primary source of income, covering ongoing costs. In addition to operating costs, these include expense allowances for volunteers and other expenses for repairs, materials, and supplies, events, or group trips. To allow many people to participate, membership fees are usually low. Therefore, clubs often rely on external assistance, whether through monetary donations or in-kind contributions. The government also provides financial support and there are certain tax benefits available at the tax office.

Commitment to More Sustainability in Clubs and Associations

Many places hold the prejudice that the consistent use of sustainable products is expensive. Upon closer inspection, this view does not stand up to the facts. The implementation of sustainable ecological strategies can be very well aligned with the social and economic goals of a club or association. To make membership more attractive to young people, the implementation of sustainability strategies is worthwhile. These include, for example, the use of sustainable energy, reusable tableware for picnics or events, the reuse of items according to the zero-waste concept, and much more. Especially among younger generations, sustainability and environmental awareness hold a high value in daily actions. With increasing commitment to climate protection, clubs also strengthen their positive image in public. In the long term, new members are won, introduced to the sustainability concept, and actively involved in environmental protection. At the same time, the environment is protected. The added value for people and nature is evident.

High five, nature and people hands from team building at wellness retreat with community and support. Volunteer, happiness and smile of support group excited with collaboration, trust and solidarity.

Biobased Reusable Tableware as an Environmentally Friendly Alternative

The use of reusable tableware is particularly interesting for sustainably oriented events organized by clubs and associations. Instead of buying new paper or plastic tableware for every activity and event, which also produces a lot of waste, the purchase of high-quality reusable tableware can reduce waste and save the club’s budget. Clubs and associations can even boost their funds with activities and the sale of second-hand items. This also works with the implementation of a deposit system at events, where food is served in reusable bowls and cups. Participants can even take reusable containers home for further use. Many reusable containers are shatterproof and very robust, as they must withstand multiple uses. This efficiently reduces waste and saves money in the long run, as less is spent on disposable packaging. The money can then be sensibly invested in the actual goals of the club.

Reusable is Worth It – Cups, Boxes, Bowls, and More

The reusable packaging from Häppy Compagnie, for example, is the ideal alternative to conventional disposable options. The reusable tableware comes from sustainable forestry, is antibacterial, customizable with logos and inscriptions, free of BPA and melamine, freezer-safe, and has many other positive properties. At club celebrations, events, or joint excursions, reusable containers offer many advantages. Switching to reusable products like reusable bowls and reusable cups with matching lidsreusable cutlery as well as boxes or multiple-use tableware is not only an active contribution to environmental protection but also supports the public visibility of the club in terms of sustainability. Environmentally conscious companies will take notice and may be won as sponsors. Reusable boxes and containers can also be used for various purposes for packaging, storing, and transporting prepared meals. Many of these reusable menu containers are now suitable for the microwave and dishwasher. Cold meals can be quickly heated for consumption in a practical cycle, then immediately cleaned and reused.

Reusable crockery: tacos, currywurst with chips in menu plates, salads in bowls, cold drinks for toasting

Finding Sustainable Inspirations for Clubs Everywhere

In addition to the use of reusable tableware, clubs and associations can take further steps towards greater sustainability. This includes switching to paperless communication via digital channels or at least using recycled paper. Instead of buying cheap and environmentally harmful meat from factory farming for the next club celebration, equally tasty organic sausages, a vegan or vegetarian alternative from the region can be used. For communal outings, carpools can be formed or public transport can be used. This saves money, promotes community, and protects the environment. Alternatively, bicycles can be made available to members. In general, environmentally friendly materials should be considered when making new purchases. Cotton tote bags, recyclable toilet paper, environmentally friendly cleaning products, and merchandise products – there are countless possibilities for clubs to implement ecological sustainability strategies.

Girl with tree seedling as climate change tree

Realizing Environmental Protection Together

Communal activities in the sense of ecological sustainability also include garbage collection or the planting of club grounds. These can be greened with sustainable plants or transformed into a bee meadow. Switching to green electricity, providing tap water with refillable bottles for members, and using regional and organic products are other inspirations for integrating forward-looking sustainability concepts in clubs. Overall, the implementation of environmentally friendly alternatives brings advantages across the board, as they also have a positive impact on the economic and social areas of clubs. Thus, the club’s budget is increased, the environment is actively protected, new members and sponsors are won, and the conscious use of natural resources is promoted together. This is a win-win situation across the board!

people helping planting tree in nature for save earth

Post authored by:

Katrin Beißner

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