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.

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Environet Cymru's 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 Help 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 certainly:

  • 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 2015
  • Increase opportunities to have a wider influence on society

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 State of Nature Iolo Williams 22:05:13 - YouTube or read about the wonders of nature and why we need more contact with it here.

1.     First Steps

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 More

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 have.

3.    Writing and Implementing a Policy
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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                           Easy Tips to Help Wildlife to Thrive

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