Environment and Nature fund available for community groups to develop a Community Biodiversity Plan (CBP) for their local area

Posted on: 6th June, 2019

Category: Environment

Contributor: West Cork People

This year The Community Foundation for Ireland has established an Environment and Nature fund of €200,000 and is inviting community groups to apply for grant funding to engage an ecologist and develop a Community Biodiversity Plan (CBP) for their local area. Within the scheme, three levels of grant funding will be offered:

The grants scheme has been devised to enhance biodiversity in communities throughout the country by combining the expertise of qualified ecologists with the skills, experience and enthusiasm of local community groups.

Strand 1: Grants of up to €5,000 for community groups to work with an ecologist to classify their local habitats, assess their condition and extent, map them, and define a suite of actions to enhance biodiversity

Strand 2: Grants of up to €7,500 for community groups who carry out the work outlined in Strand 1 in collaboration with one or two land managers/owners to classify habitats at landscape scale with a focus on field boundaries (hedgerows, treelines and stone walls), assess their condition and extent, map them and define a suite of actions to enhance biodiversity

Strand 3: Grants of up to €10,000 for community groups who carry out the work outlined in Strand 1 in collaboration with three to five land managers/owners to classify habitats at landscape scale with a focus on field boundaries (hedgerows, treelines and stone walls), assess their condition and extent, map them and define a suite of actions to enhance biodiversity.

Grants will support community groups who wish to carry out ecological studies in their local areas with a view to developing a Community Biodiversity Plan. It is expected that studies will be carried out by qualified ecologists between February 2020 and November 2020, with final CBPs to be submitted by funded community groups to The Community Foundation for Ireland by March 2021.

Priority will be given to projects that focus heavily on engaging the wider community and demonstrate an intention and capacity to work closely with local landowners/ managers and with their chosen ecologist to produce a coherent, accessible and achievable Community Biodiversity Plan.

A resource pack will be provided to all successful applicants and will include a directory of ecologists who have been trained and briefed by The Community Foundation for Ireland in relation to the scheme, its proposed methodologies and its intended outcomes. These ecologists have agreed to a daily rate for their work of €330 exclusive of VAT and inclusive of travel and subsistence.

Groups may work with an ecologist whose name does not appear in the directory, provided they are suitably qualified and agree to the terms set out in the study criteria.

The ultimate aim of the funding scheme is that successful community groups will develop a Community Biodiversity Plan based on the expert recommendations arising from the ecological study of their area. Further to this, each ecologist will be expected to submit their collected data to the National Biodivserity Data Centre by the end of March 2021.

The fund will not cover core or ongoing overhead costs of grantee organisations, Equipment costs, Promotion of religious causes, Work that has already taken place, Non-charitable activities, General political donations, Sponsorship or fundraising events, Work taking place outside the Republic of Ireland

Once you have ensured that you meet all of the grant criteria (information availanle online), you can then make an online application on www.communityfoundation.ie. Closing Date: 4pm on June 28, 2019.

NOTE: Your application will be acknowledged. If you do not receive an acknowledgement email, please contact at info@foundation.ie or on 01 874 7354.

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