In addition to running the Britain in Bloom and It’s Your Neighbourhood initiatives which have done so much to change the appearance of streets, townscapes and public spaces across the UK, the Royal Horticutural Society (RHS), supports communities in a range of other ways, from creating resources to offering project grants.
The deadline of 18th November is rapidly approaching for two of the charity’s most recent grants: the RHS Connected Communities Grant and the RHS Sustainable Futures Grant, both of which offer funds of up to £2,500 to relevant groups for qualifying projects. If successful, the money can be spent on a range of diverse areas, including gardening materials such as plants and planters, marketing campaigns, training, addressing access and inclusion issues and volunteer expenses.
Gardening is increasingly recognised as a great way of bringing communities together and making new connections, irrespective of factors such as age, social class, gender and culture. This community connection has become even more important in counteracting the sense of isolation that the Covid pandemic created for so many people.
The aims of the Connected Communities Grant are to increase the number of people and expand the demographic of those involved in community horticulture, as well as to raise awareness and increase opportunities to make social connections through gardening.
Groups registered with Britain in Bloom and It’s Your Neighbourhood are eligible to apply for horticultural schemes which seek to broaden their work to involve new communities and organisations. Although grants are available for existing projects, they do need to demonstrate that the funds will be used for new work or for developing current work e.g. involving new people.
Other criteria include:
This grant is available to schools registered with the Campaign for School Gardening as well as to Britain in Bloom and It’s Your Neighbourhood groups. The grant underpins the commitment of the RHS to sustainable horticulture which was also highlighted by the increased number of marks awarded for sustainability in the 2022 Britain in Bloom judges’ marking scheme.
The aim of the grant is to help recipients future-proof and adapt community gardening projects in the face of a rapidly evolving environment and the challenges that brings. This includes initiatives such as adjusting practice to take account of extreme weather and growing a group’s volunteer base to help identify creative community-led solutions to these challenges.
Qualifying projects need to identify a specific challenge or issue that could impact the group, its work or the local community. They should also:
These grants follow on from other funding schemes which include the RHS Community Wellbeing Grant which offered up to £10,000 for projects carried out in 2022 that demonstrated creativity and commitment to community inclusion. Many of the grant schemes that the RHS offer reflect the charity’s aim to make gardening as inclusive as possible.
Amberol products have long formed an important part of many community projects, ticking the boxes of sustainability by using recycled or recyclable materials in our self-watering planters, litter bins and benches and picnic tables. Our self-watering planters also help conserve water and reduce maintenance demands. Call 01773 830 930 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.