Posted: 15.05.19 at 17:38 by The Editor
A pilot project to inspire people to learn about their environment and address environmental issues has been launched in Rutland.
Sustainable Land Trust's Big Ecosystems Survey, a citizen science project, kicked off on Monday at the Kings Centre in Barleythorpe.
The survey aims to encourage volunteers - known as Natural Leaders - to gather information about their local area and the important services that nature provides to their daily lives. It will create a picture of local biodiversity, climate change impacts and opportunities, natural resources, and how landscapes contribute to a communities health and wellbeing.
“This is a very exciting programme for us and hopefully will inspire people to really get to know their area and use their skills positively for their communities,” says Kate Hiseman, CEO and founder of the trust based in Burrough on the Hill.
“We are all being asked to take immediate action to protect our environment, and whilst people want to do this, the job seems too big.
"This programme brings it to a level that people can really start to make a difference as a result of their own actions.
"Our ultimate aim is to create Natural Leaders across the UK, focusing on both urban and rural land to promote the value that nature has in both helping society and protecting the environment."
The pilot launch event started with presentations from Barleythorpe Community Trust and Melton and Oakham Waterways Society, leading into a training session for volunteers on measuring biodiversity through plant identification.
In future weeks the training programme will be held on Mondays at Oakham Heights in Barleythorpe from 1.30pm to 3.30pm and Oakham Canal from 4pm to 6pm.
The three-month programme will train volunteers how to survey their housing estate, village, school grounds, or community garden to identify all the services that nature is providing to their area.
Training will be given in a wide range of environmental survey skills such as measuring carbon stocks in trees and soils, biodiversity richness, water and soil quality, pollination and measuring how areas can contribute to health and wellbeing and the local economy.
Volunteers will learn how to communicate their findings and explore ways to influence change.
For more information and to register as a Natural Leader visit the trust website by clicking the red button below or call 01664 400150.
Photo courtesy of Sustainable Land Trust