Branch Out supports projects within the Northumbrian Water operating area which enhance the local environment, and benefit wildlife and communities. Applications are welcomed from organisations, community groups and individuals from the public, private, voluntary and education sectors. The deadline for the current round of funding is 31 August 2018.
Since launching in 2013 Branch Out has awarded grants worth over £310,000 across over 70 different projects. Projects can also be supported by ‘Just an Hour′, Northumbrian Water′s employee volunteering programme. Last year Branch Out was a finalist at the prestigious Edie Sustainability Leaders Awards, which recognise excellence and innovation in sustainability.
Judging for the most recent round of Branch Out funding took place in March 2018, with over £30,000 of funding being allocated across eight new projects.
Stuart Pudney, Conservation and Land Manager for Northumbrian Water, said: "A healthy natural environment is essential for us to supply top quality drinking water. Since launching in 2013 Branch Out has made a really significant contribution to helping this region build resilience and adapt to the changing climate, whilst benefiting water, wildlife and local communities.
"We are now accepting applications for the current round of funding, and with grants of up to £25,000 available we encourage organisations, groups and individuals to get their bids in to us by the end of August 2018."
The Natural History Society of Northumbria (NHSN) has been successful in applying for Branch Out funding from the most recent funding round, securing £2,000 for wildlife conservation work at the Gosforth Park Nature Reserve.
Director, Clare Freeman said "All of the work at the nature reserve is carried out by our dedicated and enthusiastic volunteers.
"Securing this funding of £2,000 will make a huge difference as it will enable us to carry out reedbed management work, ensuring the habitat is maintained for species such a bitterns, which are always a favourite for people to see.
"We shall be able to offer far more moth recording events throughout the year, increasing our biological monitoring of this precious reserve and enabling people to learn about these fascinating insects."
Full details on how to apply are available at www.branchout-nw.co.uk. All applications will be carefully considered and judged against set criteria. Decisions for applications received by 31 August 2018 will be provided by 30 September 2018.