Our History

Our History

Sheffield Environmental Movement was started in 2016 by Maxwell A Ayamba BEM,  to encourage access to green and rural spaces for BAMER communities in Sheffield. Check out our mission statement below:   

Our Mission Statement

SEM’s ethos is to work with Black Asian, Minority Ethnic and Refugees (BAMER) communities and environmental organisations to ensure everyone has a clean healthy environment and access to open green spaces such as parks that would promote a good quality of life. To ensure a ‘fair green deal’ for individuals to help them develop resilient and prosperous communities by ensuring the environmental sector listens to and is guided by all parts of society including people who feel ‘invisible’ and marginalised. This will involve promoting social and environmental justice for those who still feel they are excluded for whatever the reason and sometimes may be classified as ‘hard to reach’ instead of ‘trying very hard’ to reach or hear them’. SEM aims to provide the environmental sector (and others) with new tools to challenge environmental decisions or omissions that have an impact on specific groups and individuals.   

SEM is of the view that interactions between the environment and human health today raises complex ethical questions relating to environmental regulations and health policy decisions which necessitates the need for environmental activities that promote health and extend human life. There is no doubt that in many ways our very actions or inactions harm our environment which will come back to haunt us in the form of sickness and death. There is a growing body of evidence that the environment can affect human health and the quality of life. Thus, the traditional divide between clinical medicine and the natural environment has taken a different meaning. This change has created a need for bioethical reflections on all levels of interaction between human health and the environment. There’s a permanent interaction between humankind and the natural environment which impacts on health and to a considerable extent, determined by the quality and access to open green spaces and parks. The environment in which we live, work and relax is also a determinant for our health and well-being. Physical, as well as chemical and micro (biological) factors in the environment can therefore have repercussions on our health and wellbeing, both physically and mentally. As an environmental charity, (SEM) has recognised that these issues are in line with the Government’s 25th Year Environment Plan (2018) and the Natural Environment White Paper (2011) ‘Strengthening connections between people and Nature’. 

Protecting the environment:

SEM upholds the view that environmental protection should be a civic responsibility of everyone because we all depend on the natural environment for our very existence. SEM believes in the practice of protecting the natural environment by individuals, organisations and governments. Its objectives are to help to raise awareness and education on the conservation of natural resources and the importance of the natural environment and, where possible work with environmental organisations to help create awareness and education among BAMER community groups/organisations on their civic responsibility and environmental stewardship/active citizenship