How Environment Wales can help third sector organisations
- Thursday, 02 February 2012
What is Environment Wales?
Environment Wales is a partnership of organisations in the voluntary sector, funded by the Welsh Government. Its aim is to contribute to sustainable development by supporting and encouraging voluntary action to protect and improve the environment of Wales.
Set up in 1992, Environment Wales has grown year on year with the original partnership expanding from 8 to 9 organisations. WCVA is the initiative’s Administrative Partner. It is responsible for providing the administrative and financial framework for Environment Wales and for hosting the Administrative Team. There are also 8 Operational Partners, which host the Development Officer Team. These are BTCV, Cylch, Groundwork Wales, Keep Wales Tidy, The National Trust, Eco Centre Wales, Cynnal Cymru-Sustain Wales and the Wildlife Trusts Wales.
The Development Officer Team works to provide community and voluntary groups with advice and support. Each project supported by Environment Wales is allocated a dedicated Development Officer who remains a constant point of contact. Environment Wales also provides funding through 5 different grant streams.
Who and what is eligible for Environment Wales support?
Environment Wales can support voluntary or community groups, charities, co-operatives, and other bodies with a not-for-profit status. It offers support to projects rather than groups, which must be specific activities rather than general core work.
In order to be eligible for Environment Wales support, projects must meet one or more of the following objectives:
• Environmental Improvement: achieving sustainable improvements to the Welsh environment through practical projects;
• Education and Awareness: increasing understanding of sustainable development and the environment through information, education and advisory services;
• Environmental Enterprise: helping create new environmental initiatives which also allow communities and voluntary organisations to contribute to their social and economic needs;
• Training and Volunteers: supporting and training staff and volunteers engaged in the above activities.
Projects must also complete the Environment Wales registration process.
What is registration?
Registration is an opportunity for Development Officers to assess a project’s sustainability and address any issues that might be a potential barrier to Environment Wales funding. The process can also help groups to think through their projects and fine-tune their objectives.
Registration applications are considered monthly, at the regular Development Officer meetings. The project’s objectives will be considered, as well as the group’s ability to deliver the project, the involvement of volunteers, issues of public access and land agreements where applicable, and whether the project contributes to the 4 key aims above.
Once registered with Environment Wales, projects benefit from:
• Ongoing support and advice from a dedicated Development Officer, with access to the combined experience of the whole Environment Wales Development Team;
• External recognition that can help with promotion, other funders or recruiting volunteers;
• Access to Environet – free annual training and networking event.
• Becoming part of a network of sustainable environmental projects across Wales;
• Eligibility to apply for Environment Wales Project, Management, and Training Support Grants.
What are the next steps?
Find out more about Environment Wales at www.environment-wales.org/
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