The funders want you to do something for nature but the purpose of your group is to help people or animals and you are already delivering many other things. Does this really apply to you?
In short – yes it does! But don’t worry.
Environet Cymru's new Investing in
Nature guide helps us look at the negative impacts
that we may inadvertently be having on nature and explains the
simple, practical but often over-looked actions that we can take to
Wildlife to Thrive.
It also explains how you can influence others and do more across
your group or organisation by
Getting Nature into Your Environmental Policy.
Environet Cymru is a Welsh Government programme working to support
any community group or third sector organisation wanting to start
or develop an environmental project.
Why have a policy that supports and helps nature?
Nature needs us to allow it space to live. We get a great
deal of benefit from nature; it feeds us, clothes us, cleans our
air and water and makes us feel happy and relaxed. If we want to
keep getting those benefits and we want our children and
grandchildren to experience nature then we need to give it a hand
because nature is in decline - at local and global levels.
This is recognised in the
Well-Being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015
which sets out 7 goals for Wales to work towards. One of
these goals is about healthy, functioning ecosystems - nature -
which can provide us with a resilient natural environment that can
cope with future changes. It is likely that contributions towards
this (alongside the other goals) will become a future requirement
of public funding.
The suggestions here are simple to apply and will most
- Save you money, meeting trustees' responsibilities
- Save you time, more time to do the important things
- Improve staff and volunteer work experience
- Improve well-being
- Meet the group's obligations to meet the requirements of the
Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act
- Increase opportunities to have a wider influence on
We can help nature by thinking about whether what we are doing is
going to be harmful, maybe miles away and weeks or years later and
what the alternatives are. When we know what we are doing and
understand some of the implications, we can make informed decisions
and do things differently.
For information and inspiration about what nature does and why
it needs our help, you can watch Wales's own wildlife expert here
Nature Iolo Williams 22:05:13 - YouTube or read about the
wonders of nature and why we need more contact with it
Sometimes the first steps towards doing positive things for
nature may simply be to stop doing negative things. Even slight
changes can have very real impacts. Using peat-free compost,
putting scraps out for the birds, leaving nooks and crannies for
insects will benefit nature as well as you and your volunteers - as
the following guide shows.
2. Finding Opportunities to Do
As well as stopping the negative things, there are many positive
things that we can do for nature that almost invariably benefit us
as well. The guide below shows simple, effective actions that can
be taken from the kitchen to the garden to the wider countryside
and explains why these are important and the impacts they can
3. Writing and Implementing a
If you decide that you can do more for nature then embedding your
chosen actions into an environmental policy will help ensure that
they are followed consistently across your group or organisation.
It will also demonstrate to funders, and to people who may want to
procure your services, that you have a rounded understanding of
sustainability and Wales's well-being goals.
Third sector organisations have often led the way on key
environmental issues such as recycling, energy efficiency and
greenhouse gas emissions and we mustn't allow nature to be left
behind. We can all make space for nature, and we need to, for
our own health and well being, now and into the future.
The suggestions below show how you can bring nature into your
existing environmental policies and the accompanying guide shows
the simple steps you can take in your home or workplace to stop
actions that harm nature and increase actions that will help nature
and wildlife to thrive.
Adding Nature to Your Policy
Tips to Help Wildlife to Thrive