Sustainability Project Assistant Lisa, at Royal Bournemouth & Christchurch Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Lisa Mills at RBCH

Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch hospitals are committed to working towards sustainable healthcare under NHS climate change targets. The trust has developed a Sustainability Management Plan that aims to reduce the hospitals carbon footprint, instilling good environmental practice for its patients, visitors and 4,500 members of staff.

My role as an SPA has been to initiate and develop sustainability engagement through continuing to expand Green Impact, and building an awareness of sustainable practice under the umbrella of sustainRBCH. I was also tasked with undertaking trust wide waste audits to identify outlets for recycling and improved waste stream compliance, with subsequent opportunities for environmental and cost savings.

The Partnership     

Change Agents UK have provided invaluable support, where the training sessions with other SPA’s in particular were extremely useful for sharing ideas and advice for delivering Green Impact. The online academy proved to be a great resource for developing personal and professional skills that have undoubtedly helped to shape the outcomes for rolling out sustainability initiatives and engagement at the trust. Support and mentoring from the NUS programme officer for RBCH also ensured that Green Impact could operate at its full potential.

Key Responsibilities

My key responsibilities have been to increase sustainability awareness and engagement, through instilling energy and resource saving actions and improved waste stream compliance. Green Impact has proved to be a great platform for raising such awareness, helping to link carbon saving actions back into the context of improved healthcare. This has involved implementing a variety of communications, from running a monthly sustainability newsletter and promotional stall, to attending formal and managerial staff meetings to pitch the importance of sustainability in healthcare. I also set up the trusts own sustainability Twitter and Instragram pages to engage with staff and external stakeholders, and helped to organise engagement events such as NHS sustainability day and Fairtrade fortnight.

Opportunity Benefits

This opportunity has provided excellent personal development opportunities through the various Change Agents support networks, such as the online learning academy, monthly catch up conference calls and dedicated SPA training and networking sessions. Change Agents have also provided opportunities for supplementary training, such as the City and Guilds Professional Development Award and Change Agents Assertive Behaviour Course.  

The Results

I have helped to more than double the number of award winning teams under Green Impact from 8 to 19 during my placement – 7 of which have attained Gold. 

“Lisa has been a valued member of the team over the last 10 months. She has really got stuck in and played a key role in moving forward our staff engagement programmes and raising the profile of sustainability throughout the Trust.”
Laura Dale - Sustainability Manager, RBCH