On 23 March this year, we launched the most ambitious fundraising appeal in our 50-year history and we’ve been overwhelmed by the response from our members, supporters and the public.
Here are some of the reasons why people have donated, and why they feel that the Nature Recovery Fund is such a vital step to bringing our wildlife back.
“Nature conservation, like charity, begins at home. In my lifetime, I have witnessed Warwickshire's natural environment and wildlife face unprecedented threats - not least through HS2 and the rapid expansion of housing on green belt land. My support of WWT's Nature Recovery Fund makes me feel that, in the face of this huge challenge, I can make a difference.”
Jane Farrington, Leamington Spa
“I have always been fascinated by wildlife and have been a member of WWT for a couple of years, however spending time in my local reserve (Whitnash Brook) during the last year has taken my interest to a whole new level. I inherited a pair of (very heavy!) old binoculars which have opened my eyes to a new world of wildlife. I am now spotting birds I never knew existed, like the Siskin and Water Rail. Each new discovery is so joyful and has brought me lightness and peace during very dark times. I have a new-found appreciation for the difference that even small areas of protected space can have, and I want to make sure that others have the same opportunities that I have enjoyed. This equality of access to green spaces is just one reason why the Nature Recovery Fund is so crucial.”
Gemma Wilkins, Whitnash
“We all hear that nature is in desperate need of our help. Precious hedges, native woodlands and meadows - beautiful wildlife-rich habitats - are being destroyed to make way for housing and farmland. Pesticides and flowerless lawns are wiping out the bees and butterflies I recall from my childhood. But there is hope, and right now communities are realising that the answer lies in the small patch of land beneath our feet. I was delighted to learn that WWT invests in projects to accelerate nature's recovery - but they can't do it without our support. I donated to the Nature Recovery Fund and volunteer in my local area because I want to see change. I encourage everyone in Warwickshire to help!”
Bianca Hollis, Stratford-upon-Avon
“My regular rambles and wildflower photography take me to beautiful areas of our countryside, but I’ve realised that as the years have gone on, I don’t see the common wildflowers, birds or butterflies I saw as a boy. Hearing skylarks is unusual now, the flocks of lapwings aren’t there anymore, hedges vanish, copses and wild corners are cleared, ponds filled in and we’ve got prairie-like monoculture fields.
All this loss wakes me up to the whole issue of declining biodiversity, and the importance of not just joined-up thinking, but a joined-up landscape. We need more wildlife and more land which supports nature, which is why I made a donation to support Warwickshire Wildlife Trust’s appeal.”
Joe Oldaker, Nuneaton
“I have been interested in nature and conservation since childhood, but this passion has grown due to the fantastic work of Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, so much so that I have been inspired to become a Young Ambassador for the Trust. I think that the Nature Recovery Fund Appeal is bold and ambitious, but exactly what we need to tackle our biodiversity, climate change and health crises. I love that WWT is creating a community of protectors, ensuring equal access to nature for all both now and for decades to come”.
Emma Atkins, Kenilworth
“My reasons for supporting this cause? Simply because I care. As a nature lover, there is so much joy to be had from seeing elusive native species or seasonal migrants. Spotting hares, foxes, cuckoos or long-tailed tits is something to regale to the next person you see. I want my son to not just share this experience, but have it more frequently than I do. If Warwickshire Wildlife Trust double the amount of land they manage across the county over the next 10 years, then I hope this will be the case.”
Drew Scott, Leamington Spa