Ruby Dixon, who attended the 2018 Catalyst Bootcamp in Bristol, tells us all about her experience of it and her journey as a changemaker.

I am 17 and currently completing my A-levels in: government and politics, sociology, and French. Alongside this I’m completing an Extended Project Qualification on the subject of fast fashion and doing my Duke of Edinburgh Silver award. Outside of school I enjoy reading, art, and cycling. I also take part in a young ambassador’s group at my local art gallery.

My current intention is to study sustainable or international development at university. My dream job would be working in the sustainable fashion sector.

I went on the Catalyst Bootcamp because I have a big interest in sustainability and making the world a better place for everyone to live. It was one of the best experiences of my summer. The whole experience was amazing, including all the speakers and workshops. I loved meeting like-minded people and the whole time I was inspired.

The elements of the Bootcamp I enjoyed the most were: the Pukka factory tour (the Bootcamp participants attended Pukka Tea’s factory and spoke with different members of staff), the talk from Bristol Lord Mayor, Cleo Lake; and the sustainability challenge, particularly when we presented our solutions to each other.

The biggest impact of the Catalyst Bootcamp for me, was learning about the fashion industry. At the moment I make a large effort to avoid buying fast fashion and fashion first-hand.

I would recommend the Bootcamp because you go through so many amazing experiences and meet so many people who are like-minded. It is such an inspiring experience for anyone who goes through it.

The Catalyst Mentoring programme has also been really useful for me (this is a six month programme pairing a young woman with a woman working in sustainability). At first, I found it quite nerve racking but I became much more comfortable as it went on. The mentoring has helped me with streamlining my goals and realising my potential. I have done so much in trying to get my local council to recycle since the mentoring began.

The Catalyst Bootcamp will run in Bristol on 24-26 July 2019 – tickets available to book now.