Grow Wild funding: Helping communities bloom.

Organisations and community groups nationwide are invited to apply for growing grants between ?500 and ?5000 from Grow Wild to create exciting, transformational wild flower sites in their local area.

Grow Wild is a ?10.5m nationwide initiative to inspire people and communities to come together to sow, grow and support UK native wild flowers, led by Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and backed by the Big Lottery Fund.

The Grow Wild community sites programme has more than half a million pounds available over the next three years for local groups and organisations throughout the UK who put forward the most exciting and inspirational ideas to give neglected and uncared-for spaces a new lease of life for everyone to enjoy.

Grow Wild is particularly interested in projects that involve young people and explore new and innovative ways of using wild flowers to revitalise their local area.

Grow Wild pilot projects have included a wild flower art installation planted within the body of a burnt-out car, an urban wildlife centre that reclaimed unused land for the local community and a community garden at a local hospital.

Claire Harcup, Programme Manager at Grow Wild, said: ?We want to hear from community and volunteer groups, including youth groups, who would like Grow Wild to help them realise a vision of transforming an unloved area into a wildlife friendly space that everyone will love featuring UK native wild flowers.

?It could be anything from a garden that celebrates the area?s history and heritage to a project that simply brings unused space back to life for the benefit of local people.?

Peter Ainsworth, Chair of the Big Lottery Fund, said: “Grow Wild is all about connecting people with nature, with the places where they live and bringing different generations and communities together in a creative and lasting way.

?Now Grow Wild has reached a really exciting stage, the chance for local groups across the UK to apply for funding that could transform their neighbourhood. I can?t wait to see some of these great ideas bloom into exciting projects that we can all be proud of.?

To be eligible for funding, groups must be aiming to plant native wild flowers, native plants or trees with the community, starting and completing the project in either spring or autumn 2014.

The scheme is now open for applications from England, Wales and Northern Ireland.? It will open in Scotland on 14 November 2013 following the announcement of the Scottish Grow Wild Flagship project.

Applications for England, Wales and Northern Ireland must be received by 6th January 2014.? And for Scotland the deadline is 14 January 2014.? A panel of experts will then decide who will receive the funding, announcing the successful sites in February 2014.

To find out more about applying to become a Grow Wild community site, visit www.growwilduk.com for more information.

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