National Literacy Trust (NLT)
A good friend of mine, Mike, works for the National Literacy Trust (NLT). This is a fantastic charity whose aim is to work with schools and communities to give disadvantaged children the literacy skills to succeed in life.
Last year, I was chatting with Mike over a beer about his work. He told me that one of the areas he is focusing on is South Manchester, very close to where Just Bee HQ is. I told him about how we are trying to encourage more children to learn about bees and the environment. We knew there was a cross over, but couldn’t quite put our finger on how we could collaborate to achieve both our goals.
In March, I got a phone call from Mike. He told me about a new project he was working on with Manchester Parks. The aim was to get kids out of the house in the Easter Holidays (away from the iPad or computer) and into their local parks to learn about nature. The tool to do this was a Nature Trail, designed by the NLT, which would be given out in parks. The children would read the trail and spot the clues as they wandered around, learning about wildlife including birds, trees, flowers, bugs and insects. There was the lightbulb moment – Just Bee could provide bee-friendly seeds to go with the trails so that kids could plant them and the whole thing would be even more interactive!
So Just Bee supplied 5,000 packets of our lovely bee-friendly flower seeds and each of them was attached to the Nature Trails. The trails were handed out to families across 10 Manchester Parks and we had some fantastic feedback from both children and parents. The local area now has thousands more children engaged with reading, nature and their local parks PLUS around 50,000 new flowers will be blooming very soon 😊
We’re eager to continue our work inspiring as many children as possible to care for bees and the environment. We don’t know what our next campaign is yet, but one idea muted was trying to break the Guinness World Record for the most people dressed up as a bees in one place. The current record is held by a school with over 2,500 children. Sounds like absolute chaos! If you have any ideas, please feel free to fire them over to us: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you want to learn more about the NLT, go to www.literacytrust.org.uk