What are the Aims of DAFFS?

edited February 12 in Other Subjects

Rita wrote recently that we as a group should clarify our aims. I agree. Let's make a list, then we can discuss the options and adopt some we think are both desirable and achievable.

My first idea is that we aim to persuade Dartmouth to adopt an Environmental Action Plan.

Dartmouth doesn't need to start from scratch. Examples of such Action Plans can be found in other towns and could simply be adapted to Dartmouth's particular needs. Here are two wonderfully ambitious examples from Frome and from Helston, or a see a more modest example from Kingsbridge, just down the road. What do you think?

What aims appeal to you? Please add your suggestions and comments below.


  • Completely agree with your words above Steve.

    We do have a “mission statement” from an earlier discussion - is this worth looking at and using?

    ”DAFFS is a group of concerned local residents, organisations and businesses that are getting together to respond positively to the global Climate and Biodiversity Emergency declared by Devon County Council, South Hams District Council and many towns, villages and businesses within the county. We pledge to play a part in facing these environmental emergencies. We believe that we can benefit from joining with others, and enjoy finding satisfying, sustainable styles of work and leisure, which harmonise with the needs of the wider world”.

    One aim is to raise interest, awareness and activity locally, in councils, businesses and individuals, in sustainability matters.

    We are currently working to achieve this through a website DAFFS.org and the design and distribution of a roundel (when COVID permits) to encourage actions and promote sustainability.


  • Hi Steve,

    I think it is sensible for you to work out what you want to do, this area is so wide it can encompass almost every ambition, many contradictory to each other. My days of management are long gone but my experience has been that Aims are long term and fairly broad.

    I agree with your Dartmouth to adopt an Environmental Action Plan but you might not want to stop there - just any old plan? what happens when they adopt it but do nothing about it?

    How about: To influence opinion in Dartmouth so that the Town Council adopts an Environmental Action Plan and to monitor its effectiveness in achieving environmental sustainability.

    Also I do think educating people in Dart Valley including your work on shopkeepers and the roundels is a key aim: Something like:

    To educate and influence shopkeepers and shoppers in the area about ways of buying and selling goods and services that support a sustainable future.

    I think your group is pushing the boundaries of the U3A remit, but personally I think that is a good thing!


  • Hi Steve

    Is DAFFS a project/working group that is within the U3A Sustainability Group? - or the U3A Sustainability group renamed?

    I feel that our priority aim for DAFFS starts with as you state, 'to persuade Dartmouth to adopt an Environmental Action Plan' but feel it should go further to include, the local areas to Dartmouth (encompassing the 'A' in DAFFS)

    Secondly, I feel that DAffS aims through Project Roundel, to inform and raise awareness of all sustainability issues with businesses and individuals in the Dartmouth area.


  • edited February 13

    Yes, Mags. it is getting a bit confusing now, with the two titles. I suppose as things stand I would say to your first question.

    With the Action Plan idea I suppose I focused on Dartmouth as the Big Prize locally. It seems that towns are inclined to set up Action Plans organized by their councils, whereas smaller communities have Sustainability Groups, with or without Parish Councillor members. I certainly agree that we should be attentive to the local villages, especially those who have yet to establish a Sustainability Group.

  • edited February 13

    Liane, a member who doesn't feel at home on websites, has asked me to post her idea here:

    "One idea that I would like to put forward (although it originated with Bob Harvey in Blackawton) is to persuade farmers and landowners to allow the trees in hedgerows to grow up and not flail them each year with the rest of the hedge/bank. There must be hundreds (probably even thousands) in Devon alone and millions nationwide. This would produce a huge number of ready grown trees ahead of the millions that are planned to be planted but that will take quite a number of years to mature into a size that can trap carbon effectively."

    Thanks Liane. I've added a photo of typical local hedges. I agree some trees would not only enhance the view but the ecology of the area would surely benefit greatly.

  • It seems that Sustainable Dittisham has grabbed the bull by the horns! They use the word "Goals" rather than "Aims" on their website, and have a list of quite specific goals for their members under distinct project headings. I recommend a look at their site. Should we be following their lead or are their goals too ambitious for our tastes?

    I can see the value of setting quite specific and measurable goals if one is to make a real impact.

  • SMART is a good way of achieving goals by checking aims against this list:






    I agree with the above suggestion:

    'To influence opinion in Dartmouth so that the Town Council adopts an Environmental Action Plan and to monitor its effectiveness in achieving environmental sustainability'.

    I also agree that the Town Council are key to leading the way in terms of achieving carbon zero targets in line with SHDC and DCC and as such should form an Emergency Action Group, supported by key stakeholders, businesses, organisations and members of the public from Dartmouth and other parishes in the Cluster.

    This forum could host a list of actions that people could try out and declare publicly when they have done so, along with any further measures taken. This will serve to encourage and motivate others, eventually we can look at statistics as to how effective these combined actions are, depending on how we measure the 'starting point'. Again, there are lots of wonderful examples of what other groups are doing.

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