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How you can get involved

Planting of a sapling

There are many different landowners and organisations working for wildlife in The National Forest, but you can help make a difference too.

Even if you're not lucky enough to live in the Forest, you can still do your bit to help your local wildlife. Here are just a few ideas of how you can get involved.

Plant a Tree

The National Forest Company's Plant a Tree scheme encourages people to contribute to the creation of the Forest. As well as buying a tree, you have the opportunity to come along and plant it at one of our sites in The National Forest.

Join your local Wildlife Trust

Group of children and adults pond dipping

There are 47 Wildlife Trusts across the UK, each of which is working to protect and enhance the natural environment of our urban, rural and coastal areas. By joining your local Wildlife Trust, you will not only be supporting their important work, but also becoming involved with a thriving group of like-minded people. Benefits of membership include:

  • regular updates through local newsletters and the 'Natural World' magazine;
  • information on the Wildlife Trust nature reserves in your area (some of which may only open to members);
  • information on events such as walks, talks and visits; and
  • opportunities to get more directly involved in helping local wildlife through volunteering.
  • There is also an opportunity for kids to get involved through the Wildlife Trust's 'Wildlife Watch' groups.
  • Read more: 'Wildlife Watch' groups

Three Wildlife Trusts operate within The National Forest:

Join the RSPB

The RSPB is a charity dedicated to developing a public interest in wild birds and their place in nature. It owns more than 120 reserves throughout the UK, and has over a million members. Many RSPB reserves include habitats valuable for species other than birds. The RSPB is also responsible for the Young Ornithologist's Club.

Join the Woodland Trust

Willesley Wood National Forest sign

The Woodland Trust is the UK s leading woodland conservation charity. They have over 100,000 members and manage over 1000 woods all over the UK (including a number in The National Forest).

Their aims are:

  • No further loss of ancient woodland
  • To restore and improve the variety of woodland wildlife
  • An increase in new native woodland
  • An increase in people's awareness and enjoyment of woodland

Volunteer

In addition to the Wildlife Trusts, the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers (known as the BTCV) provides plenty of opportunities to get out into your local environment and get your hands dirty. The BTCV is the UK's largest practical conservation charity and each year it helps over 130,000 volunteers take hands-on action to improve the rural and urban environment.

It offers:

  • practical conservation opportunities;
  • support and advice for local people and community groups;
  • training and learning opportunities;
  • grants for community groups; and
  • mail-order delivery, including trees, wildflowers, tools and handbooks.

Wildlife gardening

A group dry stone wall building

While the countryside is very important for wildlife, a rich variety of plants and animals are found in our towns and cities too. While roads and buildings may not seem ideal for wildlife, our gardens provide oases of green in urban areas. So how you manage your garden can have a real effect on the animals that visit it.

Wild About Gardens is a project run by the Wildlife Trusts and the Royal Horticultural Society. It aims to bring together the worlds of gardening and nature conservation to make our gardens better places for wildlife. This not only benefits plants and animals but, by bringing nature into our homes, it benefits people too.