Sustainable living festival

Article image - Sustainable living festival Councillor Richard Lim at the Springvale Community Hub.

Clothes swaps, zero-waste cooking classes and a workshop on how to build a bee hotel were all part of Forever Fest – ‘a festival to celebrate and educate on sustainability and fighting climate change’ held in City of Greater Dandenong (CGD), Victoria.

Mars One Astronaut Candidate, Dianne McGrath was ambassador for the festival, with key speakers Jodi Boylan (Executive Producer of ABC’s program War on Waste), celebrity chef Alice Zaslavksy, Charlotte Connell (Founder of the Sustainability Collective) and Barney Swan (Founder of ClimateForce).

Swan made a tangible contribution to Australian ecosystems by planting 100 trees in the Daintree each day of the festival. The 900 trees encourage a net positive culture, protect biodiversity, reduce run off to the Great Barrier Reef and create rural resilience. 

Mayor, Angela Long said the festival, with its mix of onsite and online delivery, provided thought-provoking content and easy tips on how the community could make a difference. 

“Each day focused on the eight themes of our Climate Emergency Strategy, which was prepared in response to Council’s declaration of a Climate Emergency in January 2020.”   

Activities included a Plastic Free CGD party, with 200 keep cups given away on the day. Attendees brought along their pre-loved clothes for a swap market, enjoyed a smoothie bike on-site, waste-free cooking classes, and tree planting. 

Council’s Climate Change Emergency Strategy and Action Plan 2020-30 is helping guide the City of Greater Dandenong to become a resilient, net zero carbon emission city with an active community prepared for the challenges of a changing climate.

Mayor Long said this event was an important part of the strategy’s aim to engage the community to be part of the solution. 

“Climate change is here, and its impacts are already affecting our environment, our society and our economy. 

“Global efforts to tackle climate change are increasing, but there are many ways we can all make a difference. 

“With climate change already impacting our day to day lives, we need stronger action, urgently.

“If we can help our community take small steps to live more sustainably, then we can collectively make a big difference for future generations.”