Volunteering Matters Action Earth 2021 is a grant-giving scheme available to any group of volunteers carrying out practical environmental or biodiversity improvements in local communities across Scotland.
Grants of up to £250 are available for volunteers to purchase plants, tools and materials. There are also a very limited number of grants at a higher level to assist projects where people with disabilities or defined health needs make up at least 50% of the volunteer numbers.
With funding from NatureScot, Volunteering Matters are already supporting groups with green space improvements and habitat creation projects. New wildflower meadows, ponds, woodlands and orchards are being planted or created to make space for nature. Successful 2021 Action Earth applicants include youth, disability and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) community projects. Activities are taking place in women’s refuges, hospitals, hospices, centres for people in recovery, sheltered and care housing, community sports areas and community gardens.
Action Earth 2021 is designed to be easy to access, with a quick turnaround time, but grants are awarded on a first come, first served basis; those interested in applying are advised to do so quickly, as over half of available grants have been awarded in under 2 months, with volunteers eager to scale-up or restart safe and structured environmental activities across Scotland. There is currently no fixed deadline.