The Student Guide To Zero Waste Week 2023

Zero Waste Week is an environmental campaign which raises awareness about the importance of reducing waste, focusing on responsible consumption and adopting more sustainable habits. 

This year, Zero Waste Week 2023 will be taking place from the 4th until the 8th of September, so the countdown is on until the week-long event. 

In this guide we’ll be giving a full rundown of what this annual campaign is and how you can get involved whilst living in student accommodation.

zero waste week 2023

What Is Zero Waste Week? 

Zero Waste Week was set up in 2008 with just 100 participants, and today it has grown massively into an award winning campaign with millions of people in over 85 countries taking part. 

Across the week, the campaign encourages individuals, businesses and organisations to adopt zero-waste initiatives, and focus on reusing, recycling and repurposing. 

Supporting this week-long campaign is so important in the UK especially, as research shows that we throw away around 43.9 million tonnes of waste each year. 

In addition, university students are said to be significantly less likely to reduce things that can be recycled, and can contribute to a large amount of waste that is sent to landfill, especially during the end of term. 

This being said, Zero Waste Week reminds us of our responsibility to reduce waste on our planet and create a more sustainable future! 

zero waste

How To Get Involved With Zero Waste Week 

Are you wanting to get involved with Zero Waste Week 2023 and join millions of people across the world taking part in this environmental campaign? 

There are plenty of different ways you can make a meaningful impact this September, so stick with us to discover some inspiration! 

how to get involved with zero waste week 2023

1. Set Yourself Challenges 

Zero waste can feel like an intimidating concept, especially when student life is so hectic, but there are plenty of simple steps you can take to help reduce landfill waste. 

Whether it’s buying a reusable water bottle or coffee cup, using reusable shopping bags, getting yourself a set of reusable cutlery, switching to stainless steel straws or practising meal planning to reduce food waste. 

Remember, you don’t have to challenge yourself to live a completely zero-waste lifestyle, even just making small changes can have a great impact on the environment! 

zero waste store

2. Dress Sustainably 

Whilst we all love treating ourselves to new clothes, fast fashion has become a growing environmental problem, which creates huge amounts of waste while fueling carbon emissions. 

So, get involved with Zero Waste Week 2023 by opting to dress sustainably, whether it’s buying from ethical clothing brands or shopping from charity shops and thrift stores before buying new items. 

You should also try to extend the life of your garments by selling them online on the likes of Vinted and Depop

Not only will this have environmental benefits, it will also have financial benefits too as you can earn money for selling your old clothes you no longer wear! 

dressing sustainably

3. Spread The Word 

Whilst personally getting involved with this full week in September yourself is great, you should also try to spread the word and encourage your friends, flatmates and classmates to join you. 

The more people who take part in Zero Waste Week 2023, the greater the impact.

So, make sure to share your personal goals and progress on social media to inspire other people to think differently about how they handle waste. 

You can help to share your experience and tips with others using the #ZeroWasteWeek on Facebook, Instagram or other social media platforms.  

After all, it’s so fun getting involved with challenges with other people, and you can be each other’s motivators! 

eco friendly group zero waste week 2023

4. Focus On Proper Waste Disposal 

As a student, it’s important to focus on proper waste disposal practices and the significance of recycling – remember, reduce reuse! 

This Zero Waste Week 2023, you should ensure that you’re disposing of waste correctly to avoid contaminating recycling streams. 

This is because even a small amount of non-recyclable or improperly sorted waste can impact the effectiveness of recycling efforts.

By focusing on proper waste disposal and opting to recycle, you’re actively engaging in the cycle of reusing materials, which in turn reduces the overall environmental impact. 

focusing on recycling

5. Attend Zero Waste Events 

Chances are, many universities and local communities will be organising workshops, and eco-friendly events during Zero Waste week 2023, so keep an eye out. 

Attending these events will enable you to learn more about the environmental impacts, will help you connect with like-minded individuals as well as help you to discover new ways to lead a waste-free life. 

If you’re living in our student accommodation, you can even host your own event for the weeklong campaign using our residents app, KLIQ. 

zero waste event

6. Donate Unwanted Items 

Moving out of your student flat or house? Rather than getting rid of any of your unwanted items which are still in good condition, give them a new lease of life. 

Here at HFS, we have a partnership with the British Heart Foundation with their ‘Pack for Good’ campaign, so you can donate any items which you’re no longer going to use. 

It makes packing and moving out easier as you’re not lugging around things you don’t need nor want anymore. 

Is there anything worse than having to pack the car up with all the things you’ve accumulated over the year that you just don’t need anymore?!  

To donate, all you have to do is have a clear out any unwanted items and fill a bag or box up with them, then leave it at one of the collection points in the property you’re staying at. 

All the donations will then be collected by the BHF to sell in their charity shops, it really is that simple! 

For those not staying with us, the BHF has over 8,000 collection locations across the UK, so you can declutter and do good. 

donating unwanted items

There we have it, Zero Waste Week 2023 is your chance to focus on a more sustainable lifestyle, help to focus on eco-friendly habits and inspire positive change. 

Remember, going zero waste doesn’t have to end when this September campaign does, you should try to carry on with the habits you’ve developed and lead a more sustainable life! 

Read next: Worried About Feeling Homesick During Freshers Week? Here’s Our Tips.

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