Choosing to study at CU means you’ve adopted Coventry as your second home – congrats, welcome to the family! – but when it’s drizzly and cold outside, we can all be quick to forget the vibrant community buzzing around the city.
While we’re already simply the best (better than all the rest…), it’s still important to keep building on the city’s success. Here at unCOVered we’ve put our heads together and come up with just a few ways how YOU can make a difference to YOUR city.
1. Volunteer your time
It may seem like an obvious suggestion but using some of your free time to volunteer can really make a difference. You’re actually spoilt for choice for what you can get involved in; from helping out at the RSPCA’s centre (and yes you can cuddle the animals!) to teaching computer lessons over a cuppa with Age UK Coventry – whatever you enjoy, there’s sure to be a volunteer opportunity for you!
You can also help out at all the lovely charity shops dotted around or donate anything that is looking for a new home – not forgetting shops in Earlsdon and Jubilee Crescent, which are both an easy 10-minute bus journey from the city centre!
For the fitness fanatics out there, get on your mark, as there is still enough time to train for the Coventry Half Marathon in February and raise money for a local charity of your choice.
2. Protect our green spaces
It’s so easy to consider a city as just a concrete jungle but Coventry has many beautiful green spaces that you can enjoy and even help to make better. If you’ve got an interest in protecting the city’s trees you may be interested in the Coventry Tree Warden Network, or you may want to pop along to a meeting of Friends of the War Memorial Park to have your say on what happens next to the important park!
And let’s not forget the little critters who call our lush greenery home – there are an abundance of opportunities to get involved with at the Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, including conservation work and inspiring the next generation of wildlife lovers.
3. Ditch the car
Road congestion at peak times is a huge factor in air and noise pollution in a major city like ours, so let’s do our part to help rush hour drivers smile and give the environment a helping hand.
We can easily have an impact on the roads by leaving the car at home and taking a walk or pushing pedal-to-the-metal on your bike to get around campus. If you’re going further afield, our public transport system is not too shabby if we do say so ourselves.
4. Inspire the next generation
It may sound cliché but children really are our future, and you can play your part in shaping the next generation. Encourage the kids in Coventry to pick up a book or get active with organisations such as Kids Run Free, or become a Play Assistant at the children’s ward to brighten up someone’s day!
You can even spread the word about Coventry University and get great work experience by working as a Student Ambassador. Prospective applicants want to hear why current students think the city is great – you can give them your first hand experience while topping up your CV in the meantime.
5. Embrace the power of recycling
We take pride in our city and want to keep Coventry clean. Recycling is just as important for both the environment and the local community – and it will help you avoid any pesky fines!
Follow Coventry City Council’s guide to what you can put in your bin (hint – the blue bin is where you should put your empty bottles…) You can even join the Coventry Recycling Club and get rewarded for your recycling – as we all know points means prizes!
6. Use your vote
You’ve moved to this city so have your say about what happens here! If you’re now spending your time between home and your student life, did you know you might be able to vote in both areas? To register at 2 addresses, make 2 separate applications and the local Electoral Registration Office will let you know if you’re allowed to register for the next local elections – it’s that straightforward.
You can help influence the outreach and engagement the University has with the local community by getting involved with the CUSU elections. Vote for the representatives you believe in, or if you can make a difference you might even want to stand yourself!
7. Share the love!
You’ve got the power to make Coventry great already – in the palm of your hands! (or maybe in our back pockets) Social media gives us the platform to shout from the rooftops and all across the web about our successes. So grab your phone, open twitter and share the love.
As a University we want to show the world how fantastic this city is so if you see something amazing, shout about it! Use #CUBelieve or #Coventry on your favourite social media platforms to share your photos and memories – the world is watching and we believe Coventry should be a main attraction!