NOMINATIONS are open for environmental champions who work tirelessly to improve the region’s green spaces and waterways for all to enjoy.
Now in their second year, the West Midlands Natural Environment Awards awards celebrate the community organisations, educational institutions, public sector bodies and businesses who are providing their communities with new or improved access to nature – one of the key aims of the region’s Natural Environment Plan.
Judges will again be looking to honour dedication, commitment and enthusiasm to nature and the positive impact it has on the health and wellbeing of local people and to help tackle the climate emergency
The awards, which are led by the West Midlands Combined Authority’s (WMCA), also aim to inspire new projects and increase awareness about the importance of preserving the natural environment.
The awards were held for the first time this year as part of the WMCA’s efforts to support and champion the good work that is taking place across the region to help natural assets flourish and thrive.
The Community Award was won by Solihull’s Armed Forces Community Garden – a former landfill site in Hillfield Park that has been transformed in a biodiversity-rich garden to provide veterans – many of whom suffer with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) – with a safe and healing space to enjoy nature or to get involved with its upkeep.
Over 8,000 people have visited the garden since it opened last year.
Elaine Butler, president of the Warwickshire and Birmingham County of the Royal British Legion, said: “Applying for the Natural Environment Awards was an opportunity for RBL Warwickshire and Birmingham County, in partnership with Solihull Council, to highlight the significance of creating serene spaces for our military veterans, especially those wounded or grappling with PTSD.
“Winning was not just a recognition for our efforts but a testament to the pivotal role the natural environment plays in their healing journey. It’s an honour that fuels the passion of the RBL and our commitment to further nurture and grow this initiative.”
The Natural Environment Awards 2024 are open to organisations within the seven constituent authorities of the WMCA (Birmingham, Coventry, Dudley, Sandwell, Solihull, Walsall and Wolverhampton).
The awards ceremony will be held at Barclays new Eagle Lab in Birmingham city centre.
Applications must be submitted by noon on January 15 and the winners will be announced in March by the West Midlands Mayor, Andy Street.
To apply visit click here.