Wildlife charity appealing for donations to help children enjoy the great outdoors

Norfolk Wildlife Trust ambassador, children's TV presenter Jess French, and trust vice-president, Jo

Norfolk Wildlife Trust ambassador, children's TV presenter Jess French, and trust vice-president, John Snape, support Norfolk Day and A Sure Start with Nature. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2018

A conservation charity is appealing for public donations to help children and families reconnect with nature.

Norfolk Day Logo

Norfolk Day Logo - Credit: Archant

Norfolk Wildlife Trust (NWT) is initially working with Sure Start children's centres in Thetford, Great Yarmouth and Holt for the first year.

It is hoped A Sure Start with Nature pilot, costing £18,000 for one year, will be expanded across Norfolk next year.

It involves getting children under five and their parents exploring Norfolk's nature spots as well as taking part in wildlife-related activities.

Nik Khandpur, head of development at NWT, said: 'Working with the under 5s and their parents is amazing.

Lyra Newby wearing bee goggles as part of A Sure Start for Nature project at Thetford Sure Start Cen

Lyra Newby wearing bee goggles as part of A Sure Start for Nature project at Thetford Sure Start Centre. Picture: Lizzie Earwaker - Credit: Lizzie Earwaker

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'Sure Start centres have been at the heart of communities for a long time.

'A Sure Start for Nature is about people realising what is on their doorstep. People's health and wellbeing is key.

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'The more people get out in nature, the more likely they are to value it and protect it in the future.'

The pilot comes as the NWT has been made the charity partner of the inaugural Norfolk Day on Friday, July 27.

Norfolk Day, sponsored by Richardson's Hemsby Beach Holiday Park and Woodforde's Brewery, is encouraging businesses, charities and individuals to organise events on July 27 to celebrate Norfolk.

Ms Khandpur added: 'Norfolk Day is about community and we are happy to get more involved in the community.'

Nature spots which will be explored through A Sure Start with Nature include around Hickling, Weeting, Cley and West Runton.

As well as the family sessions the NWT will provide a leaflet showing Norfolk's green areas.

The project received nearly £8,000 from National Lottery funding plus support from the Children and Nature Fund, started by the trust's vice-chairman, John Snape, in 2016.

It has also received financial support from Norwich's White Stuff.

'Being able to put in funding for the long-term project would be amazing,' Ms Khandpur added.

To donate visit www.norfolkwildlifetrust.org.uk/surestart, call 01603 625540 or post a cheque payable to Norfolk Wildlife Trust to Norfolk Wildlife Trust, Bewick House, 22 Thorpe Road, Norwich, NR1 1RY.

?Let us know about your Norfolk Day event by emailing norfolkday@archant.co.uk, tweeting @norfolk or messaging the Norfolk Day Facebook page.

Norfolk Day shop

An online shop has been launched selling Norfolk Day marketing material which event organisers can display on the day.

The shop is selling a four-pack of flags, four-pack of A3 posters and 20 balloons at £4, while 5m of bunting is £7.50.

Celebration packs containing all of the above are available for £15.

Norfolk Day takes place on Friday, July 27 and is intended as a day of fun in which individuals, community groups and businesses are encouraged to get involved by hosting or participating in events.

The initiative was launched by the EDP and Norwich Evening News in partnership with BBC Radio Norfolk and has the backing of business and community organisations who are planning events for the day.

Details of events will be revealed in the newspaper, online and via social media.

To order Norfolk Day materials, visit the online shop.

Estimated delivery time for these items is 28 days.

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