How to be a Sustainable Celebrant

Sustainability is something we all need to be aware of, adopt and embrace. Sustainability is the reduction of causing as little damage to the earth, natural environments, recycling, reusing, and reducing our carbon footprint to ensure further generations benefit.

In short it is being green and eco aware and this is something we as celebrants and as humans need to be doing.

Changes to Make to be a Sustainable Celebrant

  • Avoid unnecessary travelling; meet clients on video call or by calling them where possible if there is a distance involved
  • Car share for celebrant events
  • Go paperless and send documents electronically where possible. If you can’t, print double sided on recycled paper with refillable ink cartridges if you do use paper
  • Stop using single use items which can’t be reused or recycled
  • Invest in a reusable water bottle (it doesn’t need to be branded)
  • Cut out the use of plastic including plastic wallets, cartridge pen cartridges, single use biros, plastic ceremony folders, plastic covered ceremony items such as some candles, and laminated or foil printed business cards and ceremony documents
  • Do you need business cards? A QR code or sharing contact details works better without the need for business cards. If you do want to use them, buy a smaller amount of recycled paper ones and use them all before you purchase more
  • Reuse any bottles you may have for sand, alcohol or paint for unity ceremonies
  • Source items locally rather than from online sites based abroad
  • Use electronic train tickets rather than printing them out
  • Replace ribbons used on vows or unity candles with recycled material
  • Reuse ink pads for more than one fingerprint tree ceremony; don’t throw them away
  • Ask if your clients want a presentation copy of their ceremony electronically (some still prefer a paper copy. If so, decide how you can make this greener as presenting it in a laminated folder tied with ribbon isn’t as eco friendly as printing on recycled paper)
  • Ask if funeral clients want a copy of their person’s funeral as many families do not have the desire to read the funeral of their loved one in the future
  • Ask if wedding clients want printed vow cards or if would rather have their vows printed on recycled paper to frame instead of keeping them in a box which may be disposed of over time
  • Suggest nature inspired unity ceremonies such as tree, seed, herb or flower planting
  • Reduce rebranding times (some celebrants rebrand at least three times during the first two years). All business cards, logoed items, ceremony folders, labels, stationery, wedding fair display including backdrops and roller banners than can’t have the artwork changed will be disposed of and most of this isn’t widely recyclable
  • If you take plants or flowers to wedding fairs, use real ones or ones that can be recycled as you will change your displays over time
  • Don’t use cheap fairy lights at wedding fairs or events as these will inevitable break and will have to be thrown away
  • Don’t upgrade your phone, tablet, laptop or other tech unless you current ones break. Make sure you dispose of the broken ones correctly
  • Reduce your digital carbon footprint by cutting down on your cloud storage. Why are you keeping past ceremonies?
  • Do you really need another phone for your business? Consider other ways to have two numbers rather than two phones
  • Don’t give out pens, keyrings, fridge magnets or other plastic items at wedding fairs and events
  • Do you really need a plastic or metal name badge stating who you are?
  • Only order in bulk if you are sure the items will be used as this is a waste of money and you are more likely to have a clear out of no longer used or needed items
  • Re wear clothing and footwear rather than keep buying other items. It doesn’t matter if you have images of you wearing the same things as remember, it isn’t about the celebrant
  • If you give clients a gift, is this a single use item that could end up in landfill? Is it made of plastic with non-recyclable packaging?
  • Use rechargeable items and batteries
  • Upcycle items
  • Borrow items from other celebrants instead of buying them

Travelling Long Distances to perform Ceremonies

This is something many celebrants (including all here at Choice Celebrant Training) do on a regular basis. If we make the decision to work all across the UK, we must travel to do this. How we travel is important. Hybrid cars, low emission fuel or by train carrying more than one person are better than older style diesel cars or fuel consuming big engine vehicles for just one person.

To be a sustainable celebrant means we should decide if we are to continue travelling UK wide or to stay within a shorter radius from our homes which will potentially decrease our bookings and earnings.

When travelling we also must consider what we use and eat when away from home. Take food in a reusable box and a flask for your journey rather than buying single use plastic wrapped food and drink from motorway service stations.

Take your own toiletries and leave the complimentary ones or if you can’t resist, refill the bottles to give them a longer usage lifespan. (Do you really need to use the shower cap? (If so, take it home and use it again). If a hotel doesn’t advertise a recycling service, take any recyclable items home with you.

Use one towel for the duration of your stay or better still take your own and wash it at home as hotels launder at higher temperatures. Only use one bin rather than the bathroom one too preventing the need to throw a plastic bin liner containing a few bits of rubbish away.

Celebrants of the Future

If we make even just a few changes this will hopefully educate and influence the celebrants of the future to have a sustainable celebrant business.  

Sustainable Celebrant Training

At Choice Celebrant Training we are conscious of the environment and are trying our best to be fully sustainable by the following:
We only provide group training in locations within a small mile radius from our trainers to cut back on the need to travel long distances
We only use meeting rooms or hotels for training who recycle and aren’t wasteful
We do not provide plastic folders or metal spined notebooks to our trainee celebrants
We do not give out logo branded pens
We do not supply badges to our community of celebrants
We do not award any items made from plastic or other materials which cannot be recycled
We do not use foil or lamination on any of our documents or certificates
We use recycled paper and refillable, recyclable ink cartridges
We explain the need to be a sustainable business to all trainee celebrants
We aren’t perfect, and we have a long way to go with much to learn ourselves. If you have any suggestions on other changes we can make, please contact us.

Blog by Choice Celebrant Training