What is Green Action Week?

We face a crisis of people and planet.
Too many people do not have equal access to the goods and services we need for a decent life, and too much stress is being put on the planet – our shared home.

There is an alternative: a sustainable future on a healthy planet.
This crisis is fueled by unsustainable consumption. It is a system which is not natural but has been created by people – so people can change it.

All over the world communities are proving that alternative methods can help us live in balance between people and planet.


We can build this future through sharing community.
‘Sharing community’ is the method Green Action Week focuses on to achieve this future.

When people collaborate and share goods and services, it brings communities closer together and brings social benefits that reduce our environmental impact at the same time. The sharing community works for people and the planet.

Green Action Week is a global campaign to promote sustainable consumption.
Activities take place from September-November, with a coordinated peak on Green Action Week (3rd – 9th October 2022).

In 2021, 50 civil society organisations in 30 countries across Africa, Asia, Europe, Oceana, and the Americas participated in the campaign.

How to plan and apply for Green Action Week 2022

Step 1: Learn from each other

i) Read the rest of this guide to learn more about the theme of Sharing Community, sustainable consumption, and browse 20 short stories from groups who took part in Green Action Week 2021 to give you examples and inspiration – we are not alone!

ii) Join the webinars scheduled for you to hear directly from Green Action Week coordinators and previous participants and ask questions.

 iii) If you have further questions, or you have not been sent an application pack, please get in touch at  info@greenactionweek.org 

Step 2: Plan with your team

It can help to think through your plans with your team. 

We have designed a five-step planning process to clarify your vision, obstacles, audiences, solutions and activities, using pre-made presentation slides, planning poster, and facilitator guide

Step 3: Application tips

When you are ready to start filling out your application, think about these tips from the people who looked at the applications the past two years:


  1. Detail HOW your activities contribute and foster to sharing community
  2. Go beyond training and knowledge sharing
  3. Make sure Sharing Community runs throughout your whole campaign
  4. Incorporate the gender lens throughout
  5. Make sure you aren’t missing your best idea!
  6. Avoid a total focus on COVID-19 and health related campaign

Common problems:

  • The applicants do not explain how they will foster sharing community. It is assumed
    in the application rather than detailed how it will be achieved.
  • There is too much focus on information sharing and knowledge sharing. While this is
    a good starting point to develop impactful activities, they must go that step further.
  • In some applications, grantees consider how their campaign will impact consumers individually e.g. by providing them a new tool, resource or piece of knowledge. It is not explained how collectively these actions will foster sharing community.
  • In some cases, sharing community only relates to one aspect of the project.
  • The gender lens is largely incorporated, but it often feels like an afterthought and
    not central to the campaign.
  • Some applicants do not notice what part of their campaign can be truly
    transformative. In some cases, ideas that have the potential to deliver successful sharing community outcomes were missed.
  • COVID-19 and health related campaigns are the main focus rather than sustainable
    consumption and sharing community

What is Sharing Community?

We want to challenge the norms of private ownership and consumerism through strong, collaborating communities. By reigniting cultures of sharing and collaboration we can create sustainable access to goods and services for more people, and reduce the stress on the planet at the same time.

These are some examples of common areas of focus for participants in 2021 (although every year we welcome new and different ideas as long as they fit the overall theme of a sharing community).

Consumers International has more detail and examples of these five areas here.

Promoting healthy, sustainable diets

Waste reduction

Tackling unsustainable consumption of products

Collaborative marketplace enterprises

Knowledge and experience-sharing networks

Leading thought and action for sustainable consumption

Want to understand more about the challenges and ideas for achieving sustainable consumption? The Anthology of Sustainable Consumption is a collection of short chapters written by nine organisations – including Green Action Week participants – to go deeper into the topic with real examples of pursuing the solutions in communities across the world.

Click to scroll down to stories from Green Action Week 2021

Benin - Benin Santé et Survie du Consommateur

In Benin, groups trying to grow vegetables in soil free of plastic bags tackled the problem at the demand-side, creating their own sustainable bags with attractive designs.

𝘓𝘦 𝘨𝘳𝘰𝘶𝘱𝘦𝘮𝘦𝘯𝘵 𝘷𝘦𝘶𝘵 𝘭𝘢𝘯𝘤𝘦𝘳 𝘭𝘢 𝘱𝘳𝘰𝘥𝘶𝘤𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯 𝘥𝘦 𝘭𝘦́𝘨𝘶𝘮𝘦𝘴 𝘴𝘶𝘳 𝘶𝘯 𝘴𝘰𝘭 𝘥𝘦́𝘣𝘢𝘳𝘳𝘢𝘴𝘴𝘦́ 𝘥𝘦 𝘴𝘢𝘤𝘩𝘦𝘵𝘴 𝘦𝘯 𝘱𝘭𝘢𝘴𝘵𝘪𝘲𝘶𝘦. 𝘓𝘢 𝘵𝘦𝘪𝘯𝘵𝘶𝘳𝘦 𝘥𝘦𝘴 𝘵𝘪𝘴𝘴𝘶𝘴 𝘥𝘦𝘷𝘢𝘯𝘵 𝘴𝘦𝘳𝘷𝘪𝘳 𝘢̀ 𝘭𝘢 𝘤𝘰𝘯𝘧𝘦𝘤𝘵𝘪𝘰𝘯 𝘥𝘦𝘴 𝘴𝘢𝘤𝘴.

Click to enlarge

Brazil - Centro Ecológico

From Centro Ecológico’s news article:

“Soon, 230 kilos of plastic caps will be transformed into food, surgeries and veterinary consultations for street animals or animals of low-income guardians in Torres [a city in southern Brazil].

The metamorphosis won’t be the result of any magic, but of approximately 350 hours of dedication from Ana Telles, a volunteer from the Associação Torrense de Proteção aos Animais. Since July 1st, when she sent a 165 kilo shipment to Tampinha Legal, in Porto Alegre, she has started again the collection, selection, cleaning and storage of more bottle caps, in a work she has been doing for four years.”

– Read the full article by Centro Ecológico here

Click to enlarge
Ana and her dog Amora inspect the plastic caps

Alone we are weak, but when we get together, in any fight, we become strong

Costa Rica - Ambio

Focusing on how to reuse household waste, Ambio in Costa Rica: 

  • Created video tutorials for turning household waste into ‘ecoblocks’ which can be used for long-lasting household furniture among other uses.
  • Created a detailed guide for how to make organic fertilizer and use it in home gardens. 

Ecuador - Tribuna del consumidor

Because of covid, Tribuna del Consumidor Ecuador used video to spread Sharing Community through tips on  composting, sourdough making, and all the other ways that we can change the systems of unsustainable production.

Ethiopia - Institute for Sustainable Development

Coordinated by the Institute for Sustainable Development, residents in the small town of Fofa, southern Ethiopia, gathered to learn about medicinal plants from the traditional healer, share food and listen to the local environmental club’s poems and drama reflecting on the pandemic. Afterwards a march through the high street focusing on plastic pollution has led to the council promising to monitor plastic disposal.

Ghana - CUTS Ghana

CUTS Ghana used the media to spread messages to target behaviour and policy change.

Stories about the ‘plastic waste menace’ and ’embracing a Zero Waste Lifestyle’ were targeted at individuals to do better with their personal actions around plastic, but also to persuade the government on its policy around single-use plastics. Both behaviour and policy change are needed for lasting systemic change.

India - Citizen consumer and civic Action Group

Telling persuasive stories about how we can create a sharing community is going to be pivotal to sustainable consumption.

Citizen consumer and civic Action Group (CAG) focused on storytelling, bringing 250 people into a webinar on storytelling, where the winners of essaywriting and storytelling competitions were announced, and the comic book below was launched. 

India - Consumer Education & Research Centre

When Green Action Week began the theme of ‘Sharing Community’, Consumer Education & Research Centre (CERC) launched ‘A Platform for Give & Take’, tailoring the concept to આપ-લે નો ઓટલો in Gujarati.

Each year, CERC have developed the platform to build a place where ‘pre-loved’ items can be repurposed and shared to reduce consumption and build community at the same time.





India - Consumer Voice

Consumer Voice ‘s sharing community strategy identified that young people were not just targets of their campaign, they should be the spokespeople and co-creators of the campaign. 

They worked with young influencers who already had networks and followings to create campaigns against  single-use plastics and created their own graphics, videos, and volunteer campaigns to tackle the issue.

Lebanon - Consumers Lebanon

Consumers Lebanon set up a Facebook group to invite people to ‘share your memories, share your toys’. To promote the group they organised activities for children to draw pictures and act in videos about sharing.

Indonesia - Yogyakarta Consumer Institute (YCI)

In Yogyakarta, Indonesia, the rhizomatic herbs which were used in previous generations are making a comeback. As Yuniarta explains, this is both better for the community’s health and better for the environment.

India - CUTS

CUTS International used media articles to emphasise to a wider audience the Sharing Community principles that the waste and inequality of unsustainable consumption is a relatively new invention, and sharing community is actually bringing back local cultures of sharing. 

They did this in outlets like Matters India, ‘India’s Socioeconomic & Religious News’:

"𝐎𝐮𝐫 𝐨𝐥𝐝-𝐚𝐠𝐞 𝐩𝐫𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐞𝐬 [𝐧𝐞𝐞𝐝 𝐭𝐨] 𝐛𝐞 𝐫𝐞𝐯𝐢𝐯𝐞𝐝, 𝐫𝐚𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐧 𝐰𝐚𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐨 𝐛𝐞 𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐩𝐥𝐞𝐭𝐞𝐥𝐲 𝐫𝐞𝐩𝐥𝐚𝐜𝐞𝐝 𝐛𝐲 𝐦𝐨𝐫𝐞 𝐦𝐨𝐝𝐞𝐫𝐧 𝐛𝐮𝐭 𝐮𝐧𝐬𝐮𝐬𝐭𝐚𝐢𝐧𝐚𝐛𝐥𝐞 𝐩𝐫𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐞𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐭𝐞𝐜𝐡𝐧𝐨𝐥𝐨𝐠𝐢𝐞𝐬"

Lebanon - Consumers Lebanon

Consumers Lebanon set up a Facebook group to invite people to ‘share your memories, share your toys’. To promote the group they organised activities for children to draw pictures and act in videos about sharing.

Malaysia - Consumers Association Penang

Consumers Association Penang used events such as their Seeds Sharing Fair to draw attention to their comprehensive activities to promote collaborative consumption:

  • Participants shown how to use these more sustainable herbs and seeds in their daily life
  • Monthly natural farming training sessions
  • A chemical-free demonstration farm
  • Giveaways of herbs grown at CAP’s own urban garden.
  • An online seed sharing sessions for those who could not join in-person or are prevented by the pandemic.
Multiplying the reach and impact of these events, CAP also landed stories in the mainstream media through providing compelling quotes and tantalising individual stories, such as this introduction: “A FORM Three student has used butterfly pea flower to give her health drink an intriguing shade of deep blue.”

The culture of sharing had slowly been eroded due to the rise of individualism, materialism and conspicious consumption... However, the pandemic proved that a sharing community is necessary as part of the response to a crisis."

Mexico - Colectivo Ecologista Jalisca

Colectivo Ecologista Jalisca (CEJ), a civil society organisation based in Guadalajara, Mexico, are one of the first Green Action Week participants to use the theme of Sharing Community to explore the issue of energy.

They told their story of investigating a more sustainable energy future for their community through participatory photo essay and video storytelling and a coalition campaign for alternatives. Below is a video but you can read the full story here.

Pakistan - The Network for Consumer Protection

Pakistan’s “Youth Bulge” is one of the largest in the world (63% of a 225million population) – how can their personal opportunities also be opportunities for sustainable consumption?
The Network for Consumer Protection is collaborating with government skills development programmes, like this women’s development center in Islamabad, where young women learning skills in everything from fashion to software are having sharing community themes integrated in their courses. Textile classes made reusable cloth bags and masks, sharing with the cooking classes using seasonal seeds and waste-reducing kitchen gardens.

𝐌𝐬 𝐑𝐚𝐬𝐡𝐢𝐝𝐚 𝐏𝐚𝐫𝐯𝐞𝐞𝐧, 𝟑𝟓, 𝐦𝐨𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐨𝐟 𝐭𝐡𝐫𝐞𝐞, 𝐝𝐢𝐝 𝐧𝐨𝐭 𝐤𝐧𝐨𝐰 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐬𝐡𝐞 𝐡𝐚𝐝 𝐛𝐞𝐞𝐧 𝐩𝐫𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐢𝐧𝐠 “𝐬𝐡𝐚𝐫𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐦𝐮𝐧𝐢𝐭𝐲” 𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐜𝐞𝐩𝐭𝐬 𝐮𝐧𝐭𝐢𝐥 𝐢𝐧 𝟐𝟎𝟏𝟗, 𝐬𝐡𝐞 𝐚𝐭𝐭𝐞𝐧𝐝𝐞𝐝 𝐚𝐧 𝐨𝐫𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐬𝐞𝐬𝐬𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐨𝐟 𝐆𝐫𝐞𝐞𝐧 𝐀𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐖𝐞𝐞𝐤 𝐛𝐲 𝐓𝐡𝐞𝐍𝐞𝐭𝐰𝐨𝐫𝐤 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐂𝐨𝐧𝐬𝐮𝐦𝐞𝐫 𝐏𝐫𝐨𝐭𝐞𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐢𝐧 𝐏𝐚𝐤𝐢𝐬𝐭𝐚𝐧.𝐏𝐚𝐫𝐯𝐞𝐞𝐧 𝐢𝐬 𝐚 𝐡𝐨𝐮𝐬𝐞𝐰𝐢𝐟𝐞 𝐜𝐮𝐦 𝐩𝐚𝐫𝐭 𝐭𝐢𝐦𝐞 𝐭𝐚𝐢𝐥𝐨𝐫 𝐥𝐢𝐯𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐢𝐧 𝐚 𝐥𝐨𝐰-𝐢𝐧𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐞 𝐥𝐨𝐜𝐚𝐥𝐢𝐭𝐲 𝐢𝐧 𝐠𝐚𝐫𝐫𝐢𝐬𝐨𝐧 𝐜𝐢𝐭𝐲 𝐨𝐟 𝐑𝐚𝐰𝐚𝐥𝐩𝐢𝐧𝐝𝐢, 𝐏𝐚𝐤𝐢𝐬𝐭𝐚𝐧. 𝐒𝐡𝐞 𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐭𝐫𝐢𝐛𝐮𝐭𝐞𝐬 $𝟓𝟎 𝐝𝐨𝐥𝐥𝐚𝐫 𝐭𝐨 𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐦𝐨𝐧𝐭𝐡𝐥𝐲 𝐟𝐚𝐦𝐢𝐥𝐲 𝐢𝐧𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐞 𝐨𝐟 $𝟐𝟓𝟎 𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐧𝐞𝐝 𝐛𝐲 𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐡𝐮𝐬𝐛𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐰𝐡𝐨 𝐰𝐨𝐫𝐤𝐬 𝐢𝐧 𝐯𝐞𝐠𝐞𝐭𝐚𝐛𝐥𝐞 𝐦𝐚𝐫𝐤𝐞𝐭. 𝐓𝐨 𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐭𝐫𝐨𝐥 𝐡𝐨𝐮𝐬𝐞𝐡𝐨𝐥𝐝 𝐞𝐱𝐩𝐞𝐧𝐝𝐢𝐭𝐮𝐫𝐞 𝐚𝐦𝐢𝐝𝐬𝐭 𝐡𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐢𝐧𝐟𝐥𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐚𝐫𝐲 𝐞𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐨𝐦𝐲, 𝐬𝐡𝐞 𝐦𝐚𝐢𝐧𝐭𝐚𝐢𝐧𝐬 𝐤𝐢𝐭𝐜𝐡𝐞𝐧 𝐠𝐚𝐫𝐝𝐞𝐧 𝐠𝐫𝐨𝐰𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐬𝐞𝐚𝐬𝐨𝐧𝐚𝐥 𝐯𝐞𝐠𝐞𝐭𝐚𝐛𝐥𝐞𝐬 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐨𝐟 𝐝𝐚𝐢𝐥𝐲 𝐮𝐬𝐞. 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐠𝐚𝐫𝐝𝐞𝐧 𝐝𝐨𝐞𝐬 𝐧𝐨𝐭 𝐜𝐨𝐬𝐭 𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐚𝐧𝐲𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐚𝐬 𝐬𝐡𝐞 𝐮𝐬𝐞𝐬 𝐝𝐮𝐧𝐠 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐫𝐞𝐠𝐮𝐥𝐚𝐫𝐥𝐲 𝐰𝐚𝐭𝐞𝐫 𝐢𝐭. 𝐏𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐥𝐲 𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐠𝐚𝐫𝐝𝐞𝐧 𝐡𝐚𝐬 𝐥𝐞𝐦𝐨𝐧𝐬, 𝐜𝐨𝐫𝐢𝐚𝐧𝐝𝐞𝐫, 𝐠𝐫𝐞𝐞𝐧 𝐜𝐡𝐢𝐥𝐢𝐞𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐥𝐚𝐝𝐲 𝐟𝐢𝐧𝐠𝐞𝐫𝐬. 𝐒𝐡𝐞 𝐚𝐥𝐬𝐨 𝐠𝐞𝐧𝐞𝐫𝐨𝐮𝐬𝐥𝐲 𝐬𝐡𝐚𝐫𝐞𝐬 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐫𝐚𝐰 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐜𝐨𝐨𝐤𝐞𝐝 𝐟𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐡𝐞𝐫 𝐧𝐞𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐛𝐨𝐫𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐫𝐞𝐥𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐯𝐞𝐬. 𝐇𝐞𝐫 𝐭𝐚𝐢𝐥𝐨𝐫𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐬𝐞𝐫𝐯𝐢𝐜𝐞 𝐢𝐧𝐜𝐥𝐮𝐝𝐞𝐬 𝐟𝐢𝐭𝐭𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐨𝐥𝐝𝐞𝐫 𝐥𝐚𝐫𝐠𝐞𝐫 𝐬𝐢𝐳𝐞 𝐜𝐥𝐨𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐨 𝐬𝐦𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐞𝐫 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐨𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐬 𝐮𝐬𝐞. 𝐈𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐢𝐫 𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐦𝐮𝐧𝐢𝐭𝐲, 𝐬𝐡𝐚𝐫𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐬𝐜𝐡𝐨𝐨𝐥 𝐛𝐨𝐨𝐤𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐮𝐧𝐢𝐟𝐨𝐫𝐦𝐬 𝐭𝐨 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐣𝐮𝐧𝐢𝐨𝐫𝐬 𝐢𝐬 𝐚 𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐦𝐨𝐧 𝐧𝐨𝐫𝐦 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐧𝐨 𝐨𝐧𝐞 𝐦𝐢𝐧𝐝𝐬 𝐰𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐨𝐥𝐝𝐞𝐫 𝐜𝐥𝐨𝐭𝐡𝐬 𝐨𝐫 𝐛𝐨𝐫𝐫𝐨𝐰𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐟𝐚𝐧𝐜𝐲 𝐝𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐬 𝐭𝐨 𝐠𝐨 𝐭𝐨 𝐚 𝐩𝐚𝐫𝐭𝐲."

The Philippines - IBON Foundation

As part of their long-running focus on “People Economics”, IBON Foundation ran urban gardens in Manilla, based on the rural system of Bungkalan – collective land cultivation 

As well as demonstrating the food security and environmental benefits of this work through practical alternatives, IBON also launched a book (“Lahutay: a path to sustainability”) exploring the Alternative Learning Centre for Agricultural  Development (ALCADEV).

The stories and photographs were added to by a poem, ‘we will green more backyards’ which you can read here.

(Swipe to read the poem if on mobile).

The Philippines - Masipag

Masipag in the Philippines are using a spread of digital platforms to reach and persuade their audiences:

  • Live-streamed radio program with Dr. Rose Samba on reliable feed and herbal gardens for farmers.
  • A packed Zoom call with multiple participants discussing their Sharing Community campaigns
  • Lucil Ortiz explaining Green Action Week on the radio program Kaudan Sang Kamatuoran
  • A radio program on Spotify about livestock integration.

Rwanda - ADECOR

The Rwanda Consumers Rights Protection Organization (ADECOR) organised community groups to:

  • Build sheds for livestock and manure sharing to support their agriculture with less impact on the environment
  • Organise groups in skill-sharing collectives for animal caring, livestock manure, and kitchen gardens
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Senegal - ADEC

Association Pour La Defense De L’environnement Et Des Consommateurs (ADEC) helped Mr Babacar Ngom and his family to build the tables, earth beds, and seeds that could turn into a garden on the terrace of their home to help feed their whole community in Bargny, Senegal.

This trial garden was documented, so that they could make a step-by-step guide to microgardening. 

Three months later, their harvest bore fruit, with the first salads, cucumbers, and other vegetables from their own terrace garden. 

South Africa - SAFCEI

Each Monday during their Green Action Week campaign, the Southern African Faith Communities’ Environment Institute (SAFCEI) broadcasted workshops on food security, from practical tips on setting up agroecological farming projects, to marketing, monitoring and reporting.

You can see the full list of recordings from the workshops on Youtube here.

Tanzania - Envirocare

On Tanzania’s national news network, Envirocare talk about their research during the pandemic into the use of natural plants for health and environmental benefits.

[TV segment and accompanying news article in Swahili]

Uganda - PELUM

In 2020, PELUM Uganda (Participatory Ecological Land Use Management) told the story of their seed bank in Mpigi district. In 2021, they went on the road with a multi-region Seed Caravan.

Below is a short film they made of their story, and you can read a much deeper story through photography and interviews they conducted here in the story of the Seed Caravan


Zambia - CUTS Lusaka

As Zambia sees an “unprecedent rise in the cost of living driven by food prices”, CUTS Lusaka is supporting families to develop their own backyard gardens as a sustainable way to grow food. This family is developing a plot that was becoming a dumping site into a garden that can limit their costs going to the market.

Zimbabwe - Consumer Council of Zimbabwe

Digging has started at the herb and vegetable gardens of the Consumer Action Clubs in peri-urban areas of Harare with The Consumer Council of Zimbabwe – and they interviewed some of the participants about their thoughts.

"When we find a reliable source of water, we work together as a community and develop it so we all benefit from it."