Trust aims to win public vote to introduce community engagement events in Tamworth

Staffordshire Wildlife Trust is aiming to win a public vote to become M6Toll’s Drive for Charity Partner in 2019/2020 and introduce a series of community engagement sessions, catered at improving physical and mental health for families in Tamworth.

The charity and its Wild About Tamworth project has been shortlisted as one of the final five projects – and – if successful, will be working closely with the Drive for Charity scheme to deliver the sessions across Tamworth and get people close to nature and appreciate the outdoors.

The winner will bag a prize of £20,000 to help them achieve its project aims, while the runner up receives £8,000. To be in with a chance of winning, the Trust needs people to vote for them in the public vote, which is now live.

If the Trust is victorious, SWT will use the money to create sessions for all ages in Tamworth to get people outdoors and be more connected with nature to improve physical and mental health.

Shelley Pattison, Senior Community Engagement Officer for the Trust in Tamworth, said: “Our Wild About Tamworth project is now in its 15th year and, in partnership with Tamworth Borough Council, has been supporting local communities to look after their local green spaces.

“And now we want to increase the engagement level beyond the existing volunteer groups to support and engage with the wider community with people of all ages.

“We were so pleased to be listed as one of the final five projects, and really hope people will vote for us.

“Our charity believes it is so important people have opportunities to spend more time outdoors and be more connected with nature to improve physical and mental health.

“This funding would enable us to engage with a huge number of the people who need us most in our community and to make a very real difference.”

If the Trust wins the vote, they would introduce sessions such as Wildlings, GetWild, Wildwellbeing and Wildfamilies events across the town.

The Wild About Tamworth project is a partnership between Staffordshire Wildlife Trust, Tamworth Borough Council and the community of Tamworth. Its aim is to enable the people of Tamworth to manage, protect and enhance their local green spaces in the ways that the community want it to be managed. The project supports nine independent volunteer groups to manage their local nature reserves and parks, working with over 120 regular volunteers to deliver more than 3,500 hours of volunteering per year in the community.

The Wild About Tamworth project also offers free environmental education sessions to local schools and independent groups, such as youth groups or Scouts for example, enabling an average of 500 children per year to engage with the natural world and access high quality curricular activities free of charge.

Cllr John Chesworth, Tamworth Borough Council’s Cabinet member for Culture and Operational Services, said: “We have some amazing parks and open spaces in Tamworth, which are maintained in partnership with a team of dedicated volunteers. We really want more people to be able to enjoy these beauty spots right on their doorsteps and this funding would help us to reach more people and get them spending more valuable time outdoors.”

People have until 16th July to vote and winners will be announced in August.

To vote, head to https://www.m6toll.co.uk/about-us/drive-for-charity/drive-for-charity-partner/ and select the Trust’s project.

This year is a very special year for Staffordshire Wildlife Trust, marking 50 years since the charity was formed in 1969. To celebrate, the Trust has plenty planned to mark the occasion. Visit www.staffs-wildlife.org.uk/50yearswild to find out more.