First impressions of Birmingham FOE

As everyone knows as a student you have incredibly short holidays…so I thought I would use mine to do something more interesting and worthwhile than the usual minimum wage office job. I didn’t really know what to expect when I made my way here on Monday morning, I knew there was an actual office and that people worked for Birmingham FOE full time. it was an exciting prospect to really devote 7 or 8 hours a day to thinking, reading and commenting about environmental issues something I usually don’t have enough time for.

The building was surprising, I’m not sure how I imagined it but it really is a warehouse. so many areas to explore, a child would have great fun playing hide and seek in here…and discover a ghost in a hidden corner. (or a badger costume!)
Chris introduced me to everyone and they all seemed delighted to have me here, definitely made me feel welcome and involved. Margaret’s cake also deserves a mention, with real lemon juice and zest! Scrumptious. I have also enjoyed trying all the different herbal/fruit teas, coincides well with my current no-caffeine experiment.
I knew Monday would be a long day, with the meeting in the evening, but it just flew by!

Learning how to write press releases was definitely beneficial and I really enjoyed that. Although I am in Manchester FOE I am quite new to all this, many gaps in my environmental knowledge wanting to be filled. Once again friends of this earth have been more than happy to help me out. Reading the climate change strategy and researching for information on waste and recycling has been demanding but brilliant to be able to understand it, particularly all the % targets/achievements that are so eagerly used. Chris has answered all my questions no matter how ridiculous!

My first week at BFOE has been great, I have been spending time on various different things and generally getting used to how it all works here. There are so many different projects on the go, much to learn but I already feel more ‘in the know’ and that I am contributing, in some way, to the campaigns. I’m really looking forward to the next two weeks!

Jules Niehoegen (on loan from Manchester FOE)