Polli:Nation wins prestigious National Lottery award

14 September 2018

Leading environmental and education charity, Learning through Landscapes, has been awarded the prestigious “Best Environment Project” in the 2018 National Lottery Good Causes awards.

The Hampshire-based charity was up against 700 entrants in their category, beating six other finalists to scoop the winning prize for their youth-led project Polli:Nation: an initiative supporting pupils from 260 schools to transform their school grounds and other local walk-to spaces into pollinator-friendly habitats.

The National Lottery Awards are the annual search for the UK’s favourite National Lottery funded projects and they celebrate the inspirational projects and people who do extraordinary things with National Lottery funding.

The award was presented by EastEnders star and National Lottery Awards ambassador Nitin Ganatra, who plays Masood Ahmed in the hit BBC soap, and included a coveted trophy and cash prize. The prize will fund a legacy project for Polli:Nation, allowing schools across the country to manage their grounds in the long-term for the benefit of pollinating insects. 

Nitin said: “It has been fantastic to see this brilliant project in action.

“I have been really impressed by the passion, knowledge and enthusiasm of the children involved. The importance of pollinating insects is often overlooked but this scheme is carrying out vital work in educating young people and ensuring the protection of these significant species.

“National Lottery players should be proud to have supported such an interesting project and I am delighted to see the Polli:Nation team’s efforts rewarded with a National Lottery Award.”

Speaking of the award, Carley Sefton, CEO of Learning through Landscapes, said: “It has been fantastic seeing the impact of Polli:Nation. From using the project as a practical tool for enhancing lessons, to creating a school-wide “pollinator promise” and even forming new meadows in school grounds, everyone has got behind the campaign wholeheartedly.

“Most importantly, the project has empowered children to tackle one of our biggest environmental issues head on.

“As pollinators continue to decline globally, our eco-system finds itself under catastrophic threat. Polli:Nation has not only taught children about the urgency and importance of preserving our most important species, but it has also given them the chance to physically save them.

“We are so grateful to fantastic initiatives like the Heritage Lottery Fund and the millions of people who play the National Lottery that help keep these projects alive. Thanks to Polli:Nation, we can trust our future is in safe hands.”

The National Lottery funds environmental projects across the entire UK, building and maintaining outdoor spaces whilst encouraging communities to commit to an eco-friendly ethos. 

Drew Bennellick, Head of Landscape & Natural Heritage UK at the Heritage Lottery fund, said: “Having seen the Polli:Nation team in action at Learning Through Landscapes, I’m delighted to see their hard work has been recognised by this National Lottery award. 

“Opening children’s eyes to the life and work of bees and bugs is absolutely critical if we are to reconnect people with nature and all that it does to keep us alive and healthy. 

“Thanks to Polli:Nation and funding provided by National Lottery players, children at 260 schools are now bee enthusiasts and wildlife gardeners.” 

Since launching, Polli:Nation has engaged with over 35,000 children and young people, encouraging them to protect pollinating insects and therefore increase the number and diversity of these species in the UK.

Project Manager of Polli:Nation, Mary Jackson, said: “What has been astounding is the dedication children have had to make a real difference through the project.

“They quickly grasped the vital importance of creating these pollinator-friendly spaces. One pupil involved in the initiative said “Bees are hungry and homeless. If bees died, we’d die… so why don’t we just help bees not to die?” She summed it up perfectly.

“We would like to thank everyone who took the time to vote for Polli:Nation and all those who play the National Lottery and make these awards possible; thanks to you, we can keep the conversation going around the importance of pollination, educating current and future generations for years to come.”

To find out more about Polli:Nation, visit www.polli-nation.co.uk.

Return to the previous page

Learning through Landscapes

Ground Floor
F Block
Clarendon House
Monarch Way
Winchester SO22 5PW

01962 846258