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Surrey’s Greener Future: Local Action For Global Impact

16th August 2019

Following the declaration of a climate emergency by Surrey County Council in July, we are running a community design challenge to identify and prototype community-led ideas for tackling climate change. We are looking for businesses and local organisations to support the design challenge.

In September we will invite residents and community groups to share their ideas about how they and their community could tackle climate change in their local area, either submitting ideas online or by taking part in a local innovation workshop. We’ll invite a community panel consisting of local people and different organisations to shortlist up to 10 of the ideas. The participants behind those ideas will be provided with specific support to develop and prototype their idea during October and November, before doing a final pitch to connect their ideas with the resources local organisations have to offer. We want to ensure that as many ideas as possible are initiated as a result of this process and we will look to connect anyone who puts forward an idea, regardless of whether it is shortlisted, with like-minded people in their area, growing a network of climate change champions.

What are we seeking to achieve?

As one part of Surrey County Council’s response to climate change, we envisage this process being a catalyst to local action and behavioural change in communities that will work alongside wide policy changes to deliver real impact on global issues.

Alongside the environmental impact of this work, we intend for the process to be about bringing communities together, capitalising on the skills, experience and enthusiasm we have within the county to deliver social value by creating connections and supporting communities to turn their ideas into reality.

Thirdly, we want this to be about working with residents, businesses and partners in a new way. Our traditional ways of providing services are no longer sustainable, nor is this what our residents say they want. This design challenge reflects a new approach where the County Council acts as an enabler and facilitator, looking to use the resources and networks we have to support local communities to do the things they think are needed in response to our climate emergency.

How can organisations be involved?

We have two main roles we’re looking for businesses or other organisations to play in this process – sponsors and supporters.

If you are not in a position to undertake either of these roles then we still want to invite you to encourage your employees, friends and family to take part!


We are looking for two organisations to sponsor the Design Challenge. This would involve contributing £8,000 towards the running costs of the challenge (for example specific design thinking expertise to enable the work, promotional materials, challenge resources and room hire etc.).

In return, we can:

  • Refer to your organisation as a sponsor and key partner throughout the process
  • Feature your logo in a prominent location on our Design Challenge web pages (hosted within the Surrey County Council website), both on our landing page and on a specific page with details of our sponsors and supporters
  • Mention your company in SCC hosted social media posts about the design challenge and reciprocally share any social media posts directly relevant to the design challenge that your organisation makes through the appropriate SCC social media channels
  • Include your logo on all printed promotional materials (and also digital promotions where this is possible within the constraints of the promotion)


Our supporters (could be organisations or individuals) will play a critical role as enablers to the design process. This could involve:

  • Donating £500 to jump-start one of our 10 shortlisted idea – We are seeking 10 organisations to specifically contribute in this way
  • Providing resources to support the challenge:

Do you have access to a suitable venue we could use for workshops and could you offer refreshments? Could you provide advertising space or the ability to promote the challenge to specific audiences? Does your organisation have staff with skills who could help turn local ideas for action into reality by taking part in workshops or offering floating support and advice? We’re looking for organisations with resources they could contribute to making the process a success.

In return for your support, your organisation will be mentioned (name and logo) on our ‘Sponsors and Supporters’ web-page. Where appropriate and relevant (e.g. in reference to a specific idea) we will mention your organisation in social media posts and/or other communications.

If you are interested, please get in touch with Beth Stewart ( for an initial conversation.