Eco-Congregation Scotland is a growing movement of over 250 congregations across the country, representing nine denominations. The aim is to help congregations to understand environmental issues and to make appropriate practical and spiritual responses.
A church can call itself an Eco-Congregation when it has registered and completes a ‘green’ audit. It then has the opportunity to work through several modules before applying for Eco-Congregation awards.
Dunscore Church has been an Eco-Congregation since 2003 and were delighted in early 2012 to join a very small handful of churches to have gained a 3rd award and, further, in 2016 to join just three other congregations to hold the Continuing Award.
We have a thriving Eco-Congregation group that meets about every three months and we involve the whole church in our activities wherever possible. We also try to forge links with community groups, including Dunscore School (which is an Eco-School) and the Pre-School.
Activities have included:
- Helping the congregation and the local community to measure and reduce their Carbon Footprints.
- Participating in WWF Earth Hour.
- Maintaining and expanding a Dunscore Freecycle scheme
- Supporting our twinned congregation in Lubuto, Zambia through a ‘Mile-of-Pennies’
- Organising events such as a Christian Aid Climate Change Roadshow and talks on “green” topics
- Holding a bookstall at the village gala to raise money for gala funds
- Helping Dunscore School to with their Eco Group
As a church we use recycled paper and environmentally-safe cleaning products. Renewable electricity is supplied by Good Energy to both the church and the manse. We actively recycle paper, print cartridges and plastics. We use only Fairtrade tea, coffee and sugar and members of the congregation are on the village Fairtrade Steering Group.. Every week in the Church Family Notices there is an ‘Eco Snippet’ which gives a little information on environmental issues.
We are keen to encourage other churches, especially those in our own Presbytery, to become Eco-Congregations. At present only five churches in the whole of Dumfries & Galloway are registered with the programme.
More information on Eco-Congregations is available at: www.ecocongregationscotland.org