My name is Rhys, a first time dad blogging about my adventures and experiences of being a parent. [email protected]

Communities combat climate crisis thanks to £2.8 million of National Lottery money

Credit: Welcome To Our Woods

Today, The National Lottery Community Fund announced that nearly £3 million has been awarded to communities in Wales to tackle climate change, thanks to National Lottery players.

Two organisations in Wales have been awarded grants totalling £2,738,621 from The National Lottery Community Fund Climate Action Fund to enable their communities to tackle the climate crisis.

The grants are among 14 grants across the UK totalling over £14 million which are the first that are awarded under the £100 million Climate Action Fund and are made possible thanks to National Lottery players. 

North Wales Wildlife Trust receives £2,499,871 to bring together each of the five local Wildlife Trusts in Wales and empower young people across Wales to take the lead on local climate action in their own communities. The partnership aims to work in Anglesey, North Powys, Ceredigion, Cardiff and Newport, and builds on the pioneering youth development work carried out by North Wales Wildlife Trust thanks to The National Lottery Community Fund’s Our Bright Future programme over the past four years.

The collective vision for the Welsh Wildlife Trusts is to foster a climate and conservation-conscious Wales where young people take the lead in positive action to tackle climate change. Projects are aiming to create green roofs and rain gardens; dig ponds, plant community orchards and hedgerows for wildlife corridors; and take part in peatland restoration. Young people will receive training and skills. 

Rachel Sharp, Chief Executive Officer, Wildlife Trusts Wales, said:  “The Welsh Wildlife Trusts are thrilled to have this opportunity to work alongside young people and their communities to help tackle climate change and reverse the decline of nature in Wales. Thanks to National Lottery players, we now have the chance to empower and inspire the next generation of environmental leaders in Wales, and pave the way for a future in which the health of our communities is viewed as inextricably linked to the health of our natural environments.”

Welcoming the grant, Craig Bennett, Chief Executive, The Wildlife Trusts, said: “This is a hugely exciting project that has been developed hand in hand by young people across Wales and the five Welsh Wildlife Trusts that work alongside their communities. Thanks to National Lottery players, through the Climate Action Fund, this project will see young people not only taking part in nature recovery projects that will help to tackle climate change but it will also empower them to influence their peers and their communities to reverse the ecological crisis that we face – every one of us has a part to play in safeguarding the natural world for the benefit of future generations and the survival of our planet.”

The second grant in Wales is awarded to Welcome to Our Woods in Rhondda Cynon Taf. They receive £238,750 to further develop the local community’s vision of the Rhondda valley. By utilising the local land and timber forest to establish a number of green economy projects they will explore ways of living and working which contribute to a positive climate impact and reduce the carbon footprint at a community-wide scale, create economic and social opportunities for the community to thrive.  

Welcoming the grant, Ian Thomas, of Welcome to Our Woods, said: “We are thrilled to be awarded this National Lottery Climate Action Fund Development Grant. It will enable us to build on the work of Welcome to our Woods over the last 10 years, and invest further in building community stewardship of the Treherbert landscape for the benefit of the community and the climate”.

John Rose, Wales Director of The National Lottery Community Fund, said: “People understand the impact that climate change is having on our communities. The Climate Action Fund is part of our commitment to support people and communities to take the lead in tackling climate change make changes where they live to take action against climate change.

“As the largest funder of community activity in the UK we know that communities are best placed to understand and act on tackling climate change. That’s why it’s fantastic to see them take the lead on protecting the environment thanks to money raised by National Lottery players.”

The Climate Action Fund is part of Fund’s Environment Strategy which has seen significant National Lottery investment through community-led projects that are focussed on activities that not only improve the environment but use it to enhance the lives of people and communities. Since April 2013, The National Lottery Community Fund has awarded more than £340 million to environmental projects, through 4,796 grants.