Ollie Nathan – Project Co-ordinator (job share)
After 5 years of volunteering at the SHRUB in various capacities, Ollie Nathan is now in post (Job share with Winna) as the Project Coordinator role for the new Zero Waste Towns Project. This means keeping up a healthy community and making sure the administration and finance is in order. Ollie holds a masters in Global Health and Policy following her interest in ‘getting to the root’ of issues and acts to support those around her to use cooperative ways of working to reach their personal and social potentials (ask more for details :-)). Key interests include new economy, Processwork, and Music. More
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Christmas- the most cheery time of the year, is sadly also the period in which the UK produces the most waste. Each year we throw away enough wrapping paper to go around the equator nine times. More
We have won two awards!
Green Gown Award SHRUB won for Enterprise & Climate Challenge Funds Award for the Waste Category. This was the first ever Climate Challenge Fund (CCF) Awards. CCF stated that “the project, led by the student community, was recognised for its collaborative approach to helping build a low carbon circular economy in the heart of the city.” SHRUB’s members have worked tirelessly to create an inclusive governance structure that is largely volunteer led, drawing in the community to combat waste in Edinburgh. A Board member, Olivia Nathan, said she was ‘so pleased that their hard work on the co- operative governance had been recognised’, commenting that she was welling up when she and David Somervell – a fellow SHRUB member and volunteer – accepted the award. More
What do the Board Do?
The Board is a necessary component of all co-operatives. The role of the board is to collectively ensure the long-term success of SHRUB in accordance with its values and with the International Co-operative Alliance Statement on Co-operative Identity. The Board is appointed by and accountable to the members who own and control the SHRUB co-operative. The Board represents the membership, making business decisions the interests of members. The Board acts as the custodian of the SHRUB’s assets to safeguard the organisation for the future. More
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In case you’ve managed to miss all the aggressive advertising , Friday 24th of November, is Black Friday. One of the biggest shopping days in the year, retailers have prepped and primed for months, coming up with the best ways to get us to consume things we don’t need and don’t really want. Black Friday is not a good deal, for the consumers or makers of the products that fill sale shelves. More
Shrub’s Food Sharing Volunteers are integral to the operation of redistributing leftover food from businesses.
On Wednesday 23rd November, the Shrub Swap & Reuse Hub Cooperative will hold its Annual General Meeting (AGM). At this meeting, members of the Coop will have the opportunity to vote on who will form the new Board of Directors.
Members are able to put themselves forward for election, either by turning up in person on the night or by filling in this form. It’s really helpful if you’re able to fill in the form in advance.
Here are the candidates who have already filled in the application form: More
I joined the Shrub as a member and volunteer on the summer of 2015, and quickly got drawn into the amazing project that it is and the incredible people that are tied to it. It was the summer of renovations, which was a perfect time to get involved and get hands on with painting some walls and building some shelves – which really made me feel part of the project. The more time I spent at the Shrub, the more I liked it, and that was why I decided to run for the Board of Directors that November, in a fantastic AGM that coincided with my birthday and involved cake, music and lots of dancing.
Now it’s been a year, and it really feels like time has flown by, and ridiculously quickly at that – from starting the REVOLVE accreditation process to getting Volunteer Management training, and from meeting to meeting with hummus and falafel interludes (so many) and amazing consensus-based decision making processes. That was one of the most appealing things of the Shrub for me – it’s horizontal structure and it’s co-operative status provides the freedom to explore new ideas and initiatives, from upcycling workshops to the Bikes for Refugees project.
As I got more and more involved, I also learnt about how to run a small organisation: HR processes, staff recruitment, getting accreditation and applying for funding. Although some bits could prove challenging and even frustrating at times (why so much bureaucracy, why?!) it was also a good learning experience for me and a way to break away a bit from the student bubble into an organisation that is trying to have a practical impact on the local community.
Having been a SwapShop volunteer before gave me a good grounding of how the SwapShop works, so I could bring that particular knowledge into the Board of Directors, while other directors would know more about Food Sharing, the Wee Spoke Hub or CineShrub. But becoming a director didn’t just entail looking at the day to day running of the Shrub (which I still enjoy doing from time to time) but to think about how to make this amazing project sustainable in future years. That in itself has been both a daunting and extremely positive process.
It’s easy to wonder whether our individual actions are having an impact, but rather than seeing it in an individual basis I think we should look at our collective power. I love the Shrub both in theory and in practice, and being a director has allowed me to meet loads of new folk, make new friendships, learn loads and contribute (even if a small amount in the greater scheme of things) to the fight against consumerist culture and climate change through collective organisation. Let’s keep this amazing place going!
Board Member, Shrub Swap & Reuse Hub Cooperative
Want to join Pablo on the Board? Fill out this super quick form and, if you can, come along to the AGM on Wednesday 23rd November from 6pm at the Shrub.
As a youngster I was never off my bike, whether I was commuting to school, heading to scouts or going off on country side adventures with my mates during the holidays, the bike was my mode of transport and my passport to a social life.
I moved away from Hawick at the age of 17 for college in Edinburgh and sadly my bike didn’t come with me. It was forgotten about and left to rust in my parents’ shed, eventually my Dad donated it to a charity shop and cycling became something I used to do.
A few years ago I was gifted a friend’s old bike and I decided to get back in the saddle once more! At first I was reluctant to ride on anything that constituted a busy road, I’d stick to cycle paths and push the bike along the pavement if there was no alternative. Riding in city traffic terrified me.
I couldn’t believe that 15 years prior to this I wouldn’t think twice about cycling down the A7 with lorries and cars overtaking me. As time went by and I used my bike more I found my confidence on two wheels began to grow.
What really helped me was setting a few rules for myself, such as making sure I am visible; bright clothing, hi-vis back pack cover, putting lights on – not just at night, but whenever I felt it may help other road users see me.
I plan my routes to avoid the big busy thoroughfares and junctions in town and where possible I’ll follow cycle paths and cycle-friendly roads even if this adds a little time to my journey. I also read up on the cyclists’ section of the Highway Code to find out what is expected of me and how to be a better two wheeled road user.
My bike is an integral part of my life again with regular commuting to work and longer afternoon trips on my days off. I now feel I have come full circle.
We regularly run Essential Cycling Skills workshops to help people like Craig build up their confidence and get back in the saddle. If you’re interested in attending a workshop, please email email@example.com.
We also run a free bike repair workshop every Tuesday and Thursday 5-8pm at the Shrub. Come along to get expert help in fixing your own bike and build that confidence even higher!