The World Mission Society Church of God (General Pastor Kim Joo-cheol, hereinafter the Church of God) received international environmental awards.
The Church’s university student volunteer group “ASEZ” and the young adult worker volunteer group “ASEZ WAO” were honored with the Green Apple Award and the Green World Award—the prestigious awards officially recognized by the European Union and the UK Environment Agency.
In 2018, the Church of God and ASEZ received the Green Apple Awards—Gold and Bronze—respectively. So, the environmental protection initiatives they have been silently carrying out are again in the spotlight.
These awards, organized by the Green Organisation—an international environmental nonprofit organization, bring out excellent cases of environmental activities and support them.
The Green Apple Environment Awards were launched in 1994 and have now extended into the Green World Awards. Experts in relevant areas evaluate environmental activities based on nine factors, including innovation, commitment, social benefit, and planning for future development, and select the final winners.
The awards ceremony was held at the Royal Horseguards Hotel in London on 15th of November, 2021. The atmosphere at the awards ceremony was even more magnificent than ever, as the 2021 Awards Ceremony was held together with the 2020 Awards Ceremony that had been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
This year marks the 26th Session of the Conference of the Parties [COP26] to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change [UNFCCC], and more people than ever before are concerned about the environment. That’s why this year’s awards are even more meaningful.
ASEZ won Gold in the Green World Awards 2020, and was appointed as the “Green World Ambassador” in recognition of its “Greenship Network” that connects individuals and organizations to protect the environment.
This project has an expanded concept of the “Greenship” project that this organization has established, emphasizing the environmental responsibilities of global citizens; it is an environmental campaign that connects individuals, communities, and countries around the world, so they can work together.
Through this project, ASEZ connected 168 government agencies and local authorities, and entered into partnership with 226 international and civic organizations as well as 56,168 individuals. The world’s leading experts, including Futurist Jerome Glenn, and government officials have volunteered to serve as consultants and give support to ASEZ. On top of that, ASEZ has contributed to raising public awareness and participation in environmental protection all around the world.
ASEZ WAO won a Green World Gold Award and a Green Apple Gold Award for Environmental Best Practice 2020, and was appointed as the “Green World Ambassador.” Moreover,
ASEA WAO received a Green Apple Silver Award for Environmental Best Practice 2021. It has also been determined that ASEZ WAO will receive a Green World Environment Award and be appointed as the “Green World Ambassador” in 2021. The awards ceremony is scheduled to be held next spring.
These awards are presented in recognition of its outstanding performance in the “No More GPGP” project aiming to raise awareness of plastic waste and the “Green Workplace” project aiming to save energy and water at work.
The “No More GPGP” project aims to collect around 80,000 tons of plastic waste by 2030, delivering the following message: No More Garbage Patches!
This campaign has been conducted more than 710 times in 27 countries, including the United Kingdom, the United States, Mexico, Peru, Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, Rep. of South Africa, Mozambique, Philippines, and Cambodia.
Through campaigns, seminars, and forums, they promote community awareness and participation, and continue their activities by signing MOUs with central government agencies, local authorities, and many other organisations. Impressed by their youthful passion and energy, people from all walks of life give them encouragement through supporting signatures.
The members of ASEZ and ASEZ WAO said: “Since we have received these awards, we will work harder to protect the earth’s environment by raising public concern and participation, for the health and happiness of all people in the global village.”
At the awards ceremony held this day, people from all walks of life, including Green Organisation CEO Roger Wolens and Environmental Activist Phil Williams, were present and encouraged the Church of God young adults in their love for the environment, through supporting signatures.
ASEZ stands for “Save the Earth from A to Z,” meaning, “Save the earth from beginning to end”; and ASEZ WAO stands for “Save the Earth from A to Z” and “We Are One Family,” meaning, “Let us save the earth from beginning to end as one family.”
As their names suggest, the two organisations have been continuously carrying out diverse volunteer activities throughout the United Kingdom. They have cleaned the streets in Harrow, Epsom, Manchester, etc., and have contributed to climate crisis response by planting over 100 trees.
They have also given encouragement and support to the COVID-19 front line professionals and organisations, including healthcare workers in Altrincham Ambulance Station, Sale Ambulance Station, Sharston Ambulance Station, and Epsom General Hospital,
By visiting them and delivering snack boxes with handwritten thank-you letters. Rob Silcock, Operations Manager at North West Ambulance Service, said: “You are doing such wonderful work in our community, which helps us keep going,” and he expressed his appreciation saying, “Your handwritten letters gave great courage to all of us who were going through a hard time. Thank you for all your support.”
The altruistic services of ASEZ and ASEZ WAO are based on the social contribution activities of the Church of God. The Church of God has been continuously carrying out volunteer activities such as environmental cleanups, blood drives, disaster relief efforts, and consolatory visits to government offices, according to the needs of the community.
In recognition of its contribution, the Church received the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service in 2016. The Church contributed to creating a pleasant living environment by cleaning up parks, railway stations, streets, and residential areas in various regions of England, mainly in London and Manchester where the Church was established.
The Church provided relief and recovery efforts to Oxford suffering from frequent floods. When there was a severe blood shortage due to COVID-19, the Church took the lead in donating blood. the Church has been contributing to unity in the community and its development through visits to nursing homes for the elderly, welfare facilities for the disabled, and fire stations, as well as support for food banks.
Especially in these days when loneliness in the elderly has become a serious social problem, the Church is a great example for everyone.
The World Mission Society Church of God works in 175 countries around the world, where the Church has over 7,500 branches.
The Church believes in God the Father and God the Mother, whom the Bible testifies about, and practices God’s teaching: “Love your neighbour as yourself.”
In recognition of its devotional activities, the Church has received over 3,000 awards from various countries, including the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service from the British Queen, the President’s Volunteer Service Award (The highest honour for groups, 48 for groups, 48 times) from the U.S. Presidents, and the Republic of Korea Presidential citations.