Start is a national initiative by The Prince's Charities Foundation to promote and celebrate sustainable living.

Our goal is to help people across the UK take clear, positive and practical steps towards a better future.

HRH The Prince of Wales has been a supporter of sustainable practices for many years. From ethical business to fair farming, social justice to rainforest protection, his charities unite under a common banner of decency, balance and respect for one another and our environment.

In 2009, The Prince of Wales was invited to deliver the annual Dimbleby Lecture. In this address, he explained why it is essential and urgent that the peoples of the world adapt their behaviour to mitigate the effects of climate change.

This message is now a familiar one to us all. But until now, much of the advice we have received has focused on what we shouldn't be doing. While we support many of the excellent campaigns to cut our emissions, we feel that the emphasis shouldn't only be on stopping, but starting.

With Start, our objective is to present an inspiring picture of a sustainable future. We will do this by highlighting the very best examples of sustainable practice in the UK, and showing how we can all make positive changes right now. During 2010, Start will grow into a vibrant and diverse programme, which will engage people right across the UK.

Research shows that the majority of people in the UK find the language of climate change negative and offputting. A great many of us are still confused about we can do to make a difference. The Start website will explain the big issues simply and without jargon, and show what can be achieved. We also want to hear from Start members about their personal experiences, as well as their goals, ideas and expectations. This way, a growing and like-minded collective of individuals and communities will help us to shape what Start ultimately becomes.

We are not purely optimistic, nor do we underestimate the challenges that lie ahead. We acknowledge that living sustainably will require us all to make real changes to the way we live. But we also believe that these changes can bring immense rewards to us as individuals and nations. And that this is something to be celebrated.