Update from Ross Kennerley South West Regional Director
Dear South West volunteer
The time is now! The importance of trees and woods is now centre stage – they are clearly a part of the solution to the joint threats of climate change and a diminished natural environment. While the issues are daunting the Woodland Trust, with your essential support, is in the right place to respond.
As Regional Director I have the privilege of ensuring that our work across the South West is as effective as it can be. This involves ensuring that the management of our 200 woods, our landowner advisory work, our campaigns, our publicity, our fundraising, our political influencing and our work with volunteers and members is clear and strong. I’m looking for opportunities for us to achieve more – and removing blockages that might get in the way.
The Committee on Climate Changes identification of the need to raise woodland cover from 13% to 17% nationally is a game changer. We are now working across the SW, with those who share our aims for increased tree cover, to see what this increase might look like in our landscapes and how we might achieve delivery against a back drop of Ash dieback. This new focus on woodland creation, alongside a continued recognition of the importance of restoring and managing our exiting woodlands, makes this a time of real opportunity.
At recent volunteer events some of you expressed interested in how the Trust works in the South West. The Broadleaf South West magazine and Whittle gives you a regular insight into our work with our activities supported by a team of 22 staff. Recent arrivals include Robin Offer (leading on our woodland management contracts), Heather Elgar (leading our influencing work with councils and public agencies), Sam Manning (as assistant site manager for Devon) and Susan Hollins as our Membership Officer in the South West
We are all home based with about half the team working on managing and restoring our woodlands and the rest picking up our work with landowners, councils, partners, public and volunteers. Details of the team are in the diagram below.
If you would like a larger copy of this please e mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Alongside the staff there are, of course, you the volunteers There are now 479 volunteers doing 259 roles with a number of you undertaking multiple roles. These roles range from woodland management through to campaigning to save woods under threat. Here are the range of volunteer roles in the SW
|Advisory Group Member||South West||2|
|Ancient Tree Lead Verifier||South West||1|
|Ancient Tree Verifier||South West||39|
|Conservation Researcher||South West||1|
|Councillor Tree Champions||South West||3|
|Events Volunteers||South West||15|
|Guided Walk Leaders||South West||5|
|Historical Researcher||South West||1|
|Lead Volunteer||South West||1|
|Local Media Volunteers||South West||2|
|Site Based Volunteer||South West||3|
|Super Campaigner – Online||South West||1|
|Threat Detectors||South West||26|
|Tree Health Champion||South West||28|
|Tree Health Champion Lead||South West||1|
|Volunteer Speakers||South West||12|
|Wildlife Monitoring||South West||6|
|Wildlife Researcher||South West||35|
|Woodland Creation Champion||South West||8|
|Woodland Working Group Lead||South West||28|
|Woodland Working Group Member||South West||229|
This demonstrates the range of skills you bring to the Trust – without which we wouldn’t achieve much of what we do. If you are interested in finding about opportunities to expand your volunteering with the Trust do make contact with Amanda who will be pleased to support you
On a closing note just a big thanks to all of you who took part in the Investing In Volunteers assessment. Securing this award was a great recognition of your work and commitment – and it told us what we are doing well and where we can make improvements to support your work
As always I welcome comments and observations from you – and if there are any issues about tree, woods and the Woodland Trust that you want to know about in the SW then please let me or Amanda know and we’ll look to cover them in future Whittle posts.
Ross Kennerley Regional Director South West