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Credit where its due

July 1, 2003 12:00 AM
By James Graham in Challenge

There are several reasons why the Green Liberal Democrats should have an awards scheme. Firstly, the occasion should serve to raise the profile of the organisation itself. Secondly, the award-winners will be granted a title that they can hopefully use in their own subsequent campaigning (being able to put "Green Campaigner of the Year" or something similar on all your election literature isn't exactly going to do you any harm!).

But fundamentally, the core reasons we want to set up an awards scheme is to encourage party activists to think about green campaigning and to spread best practice. As a party we should do much more to celebrate excellence - not only do the people concerned deserve the credit, but it encourages others to take on those ideas as well.

We can tell people until we go blue in the face that they should do more on green campaigning, but ultimately, the best way to get the party as a whole to take environmental campaigning more seriously is to lead by example. Awards are one way of doing precisely that.

To that end, the GLD executive is planning its first awards ceremony for the 2004 Spring Conference. We have decided against drawing up a list of categories per se, as we want to reward the best of the best, not merely those who fit a certain description. The awards will be open to any party individual or organisation to enter, including, among others, parliamentarians, councillors, agents, candidates, local parties, youth and student branches and council groups. The awards will be concerned with the organisation or individual's record of action in 2003.

We plan to judge the entrants against the following criteria:


· Has the organisation/individual/campaign approached green issues in a new and challenging way?


· How has the organisation/individual/campaign demonstrated imaginative and creative thinking and problem solving?


· How much impact has the organisation/individual/campaign had in the minds of party members and the general public?


· What specific positive outcomes can the organisation/individual/campaign point to?

Further information will be available on the new Green Lib Dems website (www.greenlibdems.org.uk) and in future Challenges. The deadline will be set for the end of the year.

Interested? Well, all you need to do for now is to continue campaigning and innovating.

If you would be interested in sitting on the awards panel that will be responsible for deciding who gets what, then please contact me (jamesgraham@greenlibdems.org.uk) before 31 August. Oh, and if anyone has any great idea about what to call the awards themselves, I'm all ears. The best I can come up with is The Greenies, and somehow I suspect that won't be too popular!