Our Community Partnership programme provides opportunities for everyone (regardless of income, ability, age or ethnic group) to access the National Trust for Scotland and get involved in its work through partnerships with national and local community groups.
The Programme also enables corporate organisations to work alongside their local communities and, through the NTS, protect and conserve Scotland’s natural and cultural heritage.
The Programme provides outdoor conservation opportunities for marginalised groups of people and to date these have included:
• Young people at risk from exclusion from school
• Long term unemployed adults
• Asylum seekers
• Prison inmates
Each conservation project is individually tailored to our partner organisations: we agree a suitable project, at a Trust site, which meets the group’s requirements in terms of size and ability of the group, travel time and duration. Most popular are day projects and our weeklong residential programmes, which are based at Trust base camps and include adventure-type activities such as sea kayaking.
We provide staff to supervise the work and group activities as well as tools and materials.
The Community Partnership Programme provides opportunities for corporate partners to work alongside local community groups and complete essential conservation work.
How is it making a difference?
Community Partnerships offers the opportunity for meaningful engagement with outdoor natural spaces for those who may have little or no opportunities to do so. It helps those people from marginalised sectors of society who traditionally have no connection or awareness of the National Trust for Scotland or the places it exists to conserve. Our projects help them build a relationship with the Trust and engage with their natural and cultural heritage.
Many of the volunteers we have worked with are young people who are not engaging academically at school and are at risk of ‘falling though the cracks’. These young people often suffer low self esteem or lack of confidence. By involving them in practical outdoor tasks, we allow them to engage in rewarding work in which they can see the positive results of their efforts. Often the young people impress both their teachers and themselves with the level of commitment and
motivation displayed while on the projects.
The participants are also encouraged to develop team working and communicative skills through involvement in a variety of environmental education activities. These can be arts based activities or simple run around games which facilitate a
deepening of participants’ connection to their surroundings.
Our Sponsor and Working Partnerships
For the past three years, Community Partnerships has been sponsored by BAA and has seen over 100 projects being delivered to young people in the communities of Edinburgh, Glasgow and Aberdeen airports. Each project will typically have between 10 and 15 young people in attendance.
Many successful working partnerships have been established with outside organisations. In 2009, our working partners, Bits and Bobs, Open Door and Multi-Cultural Family Base helped us deliver projects to vulnerable people. These projects have been hugely successful and resulted in very positive feedback from the participants.
After working with Community Partnerships with her pupils, Roseleen Shanley, teacher at Bucksburn Academy in Aberdeen, said: This is a fantastic project and partnership which has resulted in such positive outcomes, an amazing atmosphere and high quality team work.
For more information regarding the NTS Community Partnerships Team:
• Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
• Or phone: 0844 493 2438 or the Volunteer Department: 0844 493 2407