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Call For Environmental Projects To Step Forward

‘One Small Step’ will help local communities clean up and green up neglected spaces

Keep Scotland Beautiful is launching a call for community groups and projects from all over Scotland to take part in the ground-breaking It’s Your Neighbourhood (IYN) initiative. Registration is now open for 2015 entries, and interested groups are being encouraged to register now to take part and make their local spaces clean and green. The call comes as evidence shows the civic pride benefits of communities coming together to improve their local environments.

Designed for community groups seeking to make environmental improvements, the non-competitive It’s Your Neighbourhood initiative, celebrates, supports and empowers those cleaning up and ‘greening’ up their immediate local areas. Supported projects in previous years have sought to improve local streets, patches of communal neglected land, and shared outdoor spaces.

Bigger and better than ever, It’s Your Neighbourhood this year has been awarded funding from the ScottishPower Foundation, meaning that community groups involved in 2015 will benefit from enhanced communications support, online data sharing and networking, as well as an award ceremony event that will celebrate successful projects the length and breadth of the country.

Recent research from the Carnegie Trust has identified that local environmental improvements can make significant benefits to health and well-being in local communities, whilst Keep Scotland Beautiful identifies community gardening projects as a great way of getting out and keeping active, meeting new people of all ages and building civic pride.  It’s Your Neighbourhood projects benefit the community as a whole, as neglected sites become cleaner and tidier - enhancing cities, towns and villages.

Derek Robertson, Chief Executive of Keep Scotland Beautiful said: “It’s Your Neighbourhood is all about supporting community participation, environmental responsibility and gardening achievement. Evidence from participants in previous years has demonstrated transformational benefits to local communities.

“Keep Scotland Beautiful is delighted that the ScottishPower Foundation has awarded funding to us in 2015/16 to allow us to further increase the support we are able to provide to projects in 2015. Year on year, projects coming forward have shown incredible imagination and commitment - I fully expect this year to be no different.

“If you, or your community group, have an idea, or are embarking upon a project that will improve your local community environment, take one small step and make sure you sign up before the closing date at the end of April 2015.”

Ann Loughrey, Trustee and Executive Officer at the ScottishPower Foundation said: “The Foundation is committed to protecting and enhancing the environment and working positively with local communities.

"We work with truly inspirational organisations and the charitable work they do is admirable. We are delighted to be supporting It’s Your Neighbourhood; a universally well received initiative that brings together local groups who are making a positive impact in their communities.”

Interested new groups are encouraged to find out more and register online to take part at www.keepscotlandbeautiful.org/iyn

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