The New Milton Sand and Ballast Green BEE Competition 2023

What’s it all about?

This decade is critical. We must get many more people on nature’s side and create much more space for wildlife to thrive. The science suggests that we need 1 in 4 people to take action for nature, and that we need at least 30% of our land and sea to be made much wilder.

What if we could create towns and cities bursting with wildlife. Urban areas with green spaces for people to relax and unwind in, to meet with friends and family.

Areas with a clear nature recovery network, supported by its community, council and local businesses. Places that feel fresher, healthier and wilder and that support both people and nature.

What if we could do this right across Hampshire and Dorset!

Working in partnership with Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust we are on a mission to create wilder communities right across our two counties.

We want people to benefit from a healthier natural environment and for people to be a part of making that happen.

The Green BEE initiative started in 2003 and over the years has focussed on different topics and invited different age groups to participate. After a slight hiatus due to the challenges in the wider environment, the competition is now back, and we are very excited to be working in partnership this year with Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust.

How to enter:

We are inviting schools and community groups to put forward a plan or proposal for an environmental project.

Applications to enter the competition need to be in by the end of January 2023 with full project submissions required by Friday 31st March 2023.

This year’s competition is open to children under the age of 14. Any number of pupils from a school or group may take part - the children can work in small groups or the entire class, however they prefer.

Submissions must be sent electronically but can include drawings, photos, and text.

Upon registration each entrant will receive a welcome pack, which will include a step-by-step guide on what to do, some branded competition goodies and a link to a video from Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, giving an insight into the Wilder initiative.

Participants will also receive a further interactive online session with the Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust team to discuss their ideas and receive some feedback.

The catchment area to be able to participate includes: Any towns of villages within the New Forest, the Isle of Wight and the Christchurch conurbation.

The brief:

To research, discuss and prepare a proposal for an environmental project to be implemented with the winning prize money.

The school and group will need to have access to land so that the proposal can be achieved.

There will be three categories: primary school, secondary school and community groups.

Examples of some ideas that could be considered:

  • A dipping pond to be used as an educational resource
  • A sensory garden using recycled materials
  • Creating a design for a wildlife garden
  • Designing an ecological adventure trail
  • Rainwater harvesting

The aim:

To help further raise awareness among children about the importance of the environment and what we can all do to protect it.

The result:

We will select a winner from each category, a primary school, a secondary school, and a community group.

  • Each of the winning groups will receive a cash prize of £1000 to go towards implementing their idea.
  • A trophy to display.
  • A Wilder School Grounds Consultation, Audit and Advice' visit from the Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust team.
  • Access to Team Wilder resources and branding from Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust.
  • A visit to the Downton Jubilee Walk (alongside our quarry) in Milford on Sea. To tour the lakes and nature area that was created and has increased biodiversity and wildlife.
  • An invitation to an awards ceremony and presentation.

Judging:

There will be a panel of judges including;

  • Cllr Fran Carpenter - New Milton Nth, Milford & Hordle, Hampshire County Council
  • Gill Perkins – CEO, Bumblebee Conservation Trust
  • Bob Lord – Chairman, Friends of Ballard Water meadow
  • Alice Gardiner - Deputy Head of Humanities, The Arnewood School
  • Rob Flower, Managing Director of New Milton Sand and Ballast
  • Craig Whitelock - Engagement Officer, Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust

Together, the judges have a strong commitment to supporting education, our community and of course our environment.

The judges will want to understand why the idea has been selected, the benefits it will bring, how it can be delivered and sustained (looked after in the longer term).

They will be looking for proposals to include:

  • A strong message
  • Visual and creative ideas
  • Innovation
  • Workability
  • A passion for your project

We will announce the winners after the Easter break via email, around the 13th April 2023.

And finally . . . HAVE FUN!

The judges and Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust team would like the competition above all else to be fun to take part in!

Think creatively and learn about environmental issues. We recognise that the children and teacher’s/leader’s time is precious, so this is not meant to be a large project but more of a creative exercise in helping promote a GREENER future.

If you have any queries please contact Suzanne Wright, Head of Marketing for New Milton Sand and Ballast at Suzanne.wright@nmsb.co.uk

We very much look forward to seeing your ideas – Good Luck!

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