It’s time to make Norfolk’s wildlife your business
PUBLISHED: 08:14 05 May 2018
Ginny Seppings, community fundraising officer at Norfolk Wildlife Trust, on a scheme which shows how we can all really make a difference to nature - even at work.
There is an old African proverb that says “if you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito.” Certainly we hear plenty of the challenges our environment faces on a global scale, and it’s sometimes difficult to fathom how “little old me” banning the plastic bottles or eating less red meat can change the fate of our vast oceans and rainforests.
But look a little closer to home, and you may notice that even our most familiar and quintessentially British species are on the decline. National treasures such as our beloved hedgehog, skylark and barn owl are under threat here in on our doorstep.
Thankfully here in Norfolk there are many ways in which, like the tiny mosquito, a small act close to home can have a big impact in the wider world.
I’m convinced that there are two key positive steps towards helping wildlife:
The first is, quite simply, to value it. Spending time regularly in nature is mutually advantageous: we, and in turn our children and grandchildren, may discover an enduring passion and respect for the great outdoors; it – the natural world – nurtures us right back, offering well-documented benefits to our mental and physical wellbeing.
The second? Getting involved with an organisation already taking action to secure a sustainable future for nature. Norfolk Wildlife Trust is one such organisation, whose work relies on those very “mosquitoes” from our encouraging proverb.
From volunteering on a nearby nature reserve, to joining your local Wildlife Trust, or even opening your garden to raise funds for a special wildlife project, it is possible to make a positive impact on the environment, right here where we live.
“But I don’t have the time or money to volunteer or donate,” I hear you say. Admittedly, in the whirlwind of modern living, it can be difficult to achieve a meaningful connection with the natural world. Indeed, the stresses and strains of working and family life can leave little time for much else.
That’s why this year, from June 1-10, Norfolk Wildlife Trust is launching Go Wild at Work, a new initiative to help you make a difference in a single working week. In conjunction with the month-long celebration of nature, 30 Days Wild, Go Wild at Work is dedicated to local businesses and their staff who want to do their bit for Norfolk’s wildlife by raising much-needed funds for conservation.
Fun challenges – like a sponsored walk to work or donning wellies for the day – are a good place to start, or even hosting an office auction, lunchtime talk, or coffee morning. Earlier this year, White Stuff in Norwich enjoyed a week of cake sales, book sales, and raffles, and raised more than £500 towards Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s education projects. This will help to instil an appreciation for nature in future generations. On a different day, a similar donation might just as easily purchase a pony, which might go on to graze many hectares of sensitive marsh or heathland and play a crucial role in sustainable habitat management for years to come.
And so, like our little mosquito, no matter how seemingly small the deed, the impact can be surprisingly grand.
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