Environmental Policy

Sabar Family Ltd. Environmental Policy

Sabar Family recognises its responsibility in reducing the negative environmental impacts of its activities and is committed to understanding, measuring, improving and communicating its environmental performance, ensuring compliance with environmental legislation.
Sabar Family recognises that to mitigate this risk, it must forefront environmental responsibility across its work and collaborate with its network (artists, partners, venues etc.)  to identify methods of creating arts that are low carbon and low waste and contribute to a more sustainable society. This will in turn help Sabar Family to continue presenting innovative performing arts and cultural events for many years to come. Sabar Family needs to work together with and in support of partners, artists and venues to make the changes that are needed, exert influence, and share its actions and commitment to environmental responsibility to its stakeholders and the wider sector.
Groups and Expertise that Sabar Family are committed to activate are summarised below with a more detailed Environmental Policy and Action Plan thereafter:
  • Establish dedicated Environmental Responsibility Champion (ERC), Tawny Buck on the team to work with Directors to share resources and implement action plans.
  • Collaboration with hyperlocal partners, Trinity Community Arts Centre, Babbasa and  FUZE UK, as well as artists to install measures around single use plastics, video (not face-to-face) protocols for choreography sharing and meetings, circular economics in costume design and making, and footprint reduction for travel; and international initiatives with Sabar Family in Senegambia, planting trees to neutralise carbon footprint (Green Up Gambia and Trees for Life).
  • Review learning and establish/publish a policy by end of project informed by Julie’s Bicycle resources to advocate for incremental culture change in marginalised artistic communities who have suffered the intersectionality of systemic underfunding and are behind in the race to establish such policies.
Ways of working
Sabar Family will continue to embrace good practices in energy-saving (switching off hardware at the end of each working day, maintaining equipment etc.) and the management and reduction of waste materials (recycling procedures, internal printing protocols to reduce paper and ink consumption, and the prioritisation of digital over paper-based working wherever possible etc.), embedding this working ethos in its induction procedures for new staff.
Identifying and understanding the impact of Sabar Family’s’ business activity is the first step in planning action to reduce any negative environmental outcomes as far as practicable.
In its financial and procurement procedures Sabar Family favours sustainable choices where practicable, defined by a set of criteria to assess the credentials of the product or service supplied. Those with purchasing responsibility are required to comply with these guidelines as far as is practicable, for example seeking alternatives to purchasing new materials where possible to reduce unnecessary waste (e.g., recycling and repurposing existing costumes); purchasing from suppliers local to the activity being delivered (e.g., locally grown food for catering activities); and demonstrating a preference to work with suppliers which demonstrate environmental policies that complement the network’s approach.
As a national network with over 25 collaborating artists, collaborating staff, partner organisations (Trinity Community Arts, Babbasa, FUZE UK), business travel is a major consideration, and is the biggest contributor to the carbon impacts of the management of the network. Following the rapid transition to flexible working practices and remote meetings, the network aims to maintain a minimum of 50% of all meetings and activities delivered online. This is aligned with broader digital and access strategies that support an increase in digital distribution, remote meetings and webinar-based training. Sabar Family are committed to using video (not face-to-face) protocols for choreo sharing and meetings where possible. Sabar Family maintains and regularly reviews a transport and expense policy that applies both to its staff when carrying out in-person events and Sabar Family’s’ Board and partners, seeking to reduce unnecessary travel and favouring public transport / low-carbon travel where practicable. Flexibility in working hours and the timing of meetings, events and activities is being considered to best support this.  
Our partners
Broader responsibility for environmental sustainability sits with the individual organisations that make up the network, with several already taking steps to explore and implement a range of ideas to reduce the carbon footprints for their own activity, including the production of public-facing events and festivals. Many partners have established policies, plans and broader approaches to environmental sustainability in place.
Sabar Family can play a key role in educating partners and the wider sector on sustainable approaches through training, information-sharing, amplifying examples of good practice and creating opportunities for collaboration.
Over the period 2024-27 Sabar Family Ltd. makes a commitment to:
  • Develop a set of tools and resources focused on carbon reduction that is specific to African performing arts (indoor and outdoor) and suitable for different levels of engagement. 
  • Provide opportunities for peer-to-peer learning, information sharing and creative approaches to sustainability with partners and artists.
  • All Sabar Family supported artists have access to training and recorded online resources to embed environmental responsibility into the creation and development of their work, raising their level of ambition.
  • Attend Green Forums, annual events for festivals, artists and other industry professionals to connect, share knowledge and examples of best practice to take positive and proactive steps to address the climate emergency.
  • Further develop the remit of the Environmental Responsibility Action Group (ERAG).
  • Continue to build existing relationships with industry experts in the UK and internationally to support and inform strategic activity and training.
  • Prepare a Carbon reduction pathway with realistic actions and timescale.
  • Encourage other festivals in the African arts industry to adopt the Vision 2025 Green Events Code of Practice.
Sector-wide ambition
Sabar Family’s activity offers a valuable opportunity to inspire positive action on environmental sustainability across the African performing arts sector. During the period covered by this policy, Sabar Family will work with industry experts specific to the culture sector to inform its strategic activity and define a sector-leading role.
For more information on Sabar Family’s commitments to sustainability, please download the Environment Policy and Action Plan 2024-27.