My first month at Bioregional

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Jonny Wilkinson joined Bioregional from South Africa and is the latest addition to our comms team. Here he talks about the first month in his new role.

When I made the decision last year to move back to the UK, my heart was set on working in sustainability. With no experience and barely any knowledge of the sector, you could call this an interesting career move.

So as soon as I heard about the communications role at Bioregional – for which I at least had relevant experience – I knew I had to apply. I felt I had an outside chance of getting the job, and I got a good feeling about the organisation. It came across confident and friendly, and it was in the thick of climate action.

For as long as I can remember I’ve had an interest in nature and natural history. As I got older, this turned into an interest in climate change, encouraged perhaps by studying politics and working in social justice. But because I was never any good at science, I never thought to take up environmental studies.

Gradually, however, a calling to work in sustainability became hard to ignore. So my move back to the UK, and the need to earn a living when I did so, gave me the opportunity to look for an organisation that is trying to make a difference.`

In early June, I landed at Heathrow on a cold, wet morning without a job prospect in sight. With little sleep and the taste of stale croissant in my mouth, I looked out at the drenched runway and asked myself what I thought I was doing. Two weeks later, I was thrilled to be offered the job at Bioregional.

How’s it been so far?

The last two months have flown by. I’ve been getting increasingly busy as I get into the groove of working at Bioregional. The many different acronyms are starting to sink in, and the different services we provide are becoming clearer. I’ve developed an addiction to lunch-time table tennis (even though my game inevitably collapses ten points in). I’ve been to staff drinks at Balham Bowls Club (a pub set in an old bowling club). I’ve learnt to my dismay that teabags contain plastic (microbeads are everywhere). I’ve called BedZED’s famous wind cowls ‘wind cows’. And I’ve somehow managed to volunteer to organise the staff Christmas party (again, not sure what I was thinking).

The hardest part?

I think one of the hardest things as I learn more is realising what a big job we have on our hands to slow down climate change and keep temperatures below a 2C rise. But finding out more about Bioregional’s One Planet Living framework, the positive vision of the future it provides – and the tools it offers to get there – is exciting. I’m inspired to be part of Bioregional’s efforts to spread One Planet Living across the globe.

The best part?

The best part is definitely the team. There’s a lovely camaraderie among the staff – it’s great to have a job that not only speaks to my strongest interest, but has also given me a terrific set of colleagues. I look forward to growing more confident in my role at Bioregional in the coming months and to one day beating someone at table tennis.

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