Wood you believe it? Community group seeks support

Posted on 10/09/2014 by

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New Caledonian Woodlands needs your vote for Inverleith Park project

plantsNew Caledonian Woodlands has been shortlisted for the Bank of Scotland Community Fund 2014 in the Edinburgh North category – and needs your support!

By encouraging the public to vote, we have a chance to be awarded a grant of up to £3,000 from Bank of Scotland to enable us to continue doing good work in the community.

New Caledonian Woodlands are an Edinburgh-based charity that exist to enhance Scotland’s natural environment, inspire positive environmental behaviour change and improve mental and physical well-being in our community. We deliver a range of projects combining environmental sustainability with education about wider environmental issues, whilst utilising environmental activities to achieve improvements in mental and physical well-being.

Over the course of a year we work with around 100 referred participants and 1000 volunteers in a range of programmes to benefit those struggling with their mental well-being and encourage community ownership of caring for local woodlands.

We educate people about the important role they need to play in a range of environmental issues, from habitat conservation to climate change and carbon footprint reduction.

Participants on our projects work together in a friendly and relaxing atmosphere,
in a setting that benefits individuals in terms of self-esteem growth, learning transferable skills and community involvement.

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Currently, our site located in Inverleith Park lacks adequate work space for our mental health participants to carry out their projects and limits the amount of individuals we can work with at any given time. We have plans to greatly enhance the space into an environmentally sustainable facility to accommodate and expand on the various mental health, employability and environmental volunteer projects we currently offer.

Being awarded this grant would help us put some tangible changes into place, the first being an outdoor Iron Age roundhouse to be used as a sheltered area for our mental health participants to hand craft products which they will then go on to sell.

Andy Ross, coordinator and founder of New Caledonian Woodlands, said: “The Bank of Scotland Community Fund could give us an amazing opportunity to build workshop space in our Edinburgh site that meets the needs of our Fruitful Woods and Good Wood mental health and employability projects. An Iron Age roundhouse will be built by our project participants and then used by them as a dry workshop space to carry out a range of activities – from making baskets to wooden spoons to small pieces of furniture. We anticipate that the roundhouse will be used by 80 participants per year from our mental health and employability projects, and will be a part of their recovery journey.”

P5The Bank of Scotland Community Fund was set up to help local people across Scotland have a positive impact at the hearts of their communities by giving grants to 232 local good causes in 58 Scottish communities.

Four good causes in each community have been shortlisted and Bank of Scotland is inviting everyone to vote for the causes they’d most like to support.

Members of the public can vote for their preferred community group on-line, by SMS or Twitter, or in a Bank of Scotland branch from 2 September to 10 October 2014. The local good cause that receives most votes in each community will receive an award of £3,000, with the other groups receiving £2,000, £1,000 or £500 depending on the votes received.

You can find out more about the Community Fund and New Caledonian Woodlands and cast your vote by visiting the Bank of Scotland Community Fund website at:

http://www.BankofScotland.com/communityfund

Voting for the 2014 Community Fund is open until Friday 10 October.

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