Celebrating the inspiring people, projects, groups and organisations working hard to protect Scotland’s precious natural heritage, entries are now closed for the ninth annual Nature of Scotland Awards co-sponsored by NatureScot. Judging is underway and we are looking forward to announcing the awards shortlist in early September.
Learn more about the nine award categories below.
Coasts and Waters Award
Sponsored by Scottish Water
Scotland’s rivers, lochs and seas are special places and bring to mind some of our most cherished wildlife experiences from leaping salmon and playful otters to basking seals and diving seabirds. To mark the Year of Coasts and Waters 2020, this special award will recognise outstanding contributions that are helping nature thrive in Scottish marine and freshwater habitats. Whether it’s an innovative project that has had real impact or someone who is connecting people with the aquatic world we want to hear from you.
Community Initiative Award
Sponsored by GreenPower
This award will go to an outstanding community-based initiative that clearly demonstrates what they have done for the benefit of nature. The project should be developed and led by the people it serves, acting as an inspiration to others and offering real value to the whole community.
When we come together we can achieve amazing things, and this last year has brought that into clear focus.
Food and Farming Award
Sponsored by James Hutton Institute
Food has a big environmental footprint; from how we grow it, to the amount we waste. But some individuals, businesses and organisations are doing things differently; taking steps to reduce their own environmental impact and helping consumers make good food choices. Whether that's wildlife-friendly farmers or farm shops, cafes and caterers carefully sourcing ingredients and reducing food waste, this award celebrates our sustainable food champions.
Forest and Woodland Award
Sponsored by Confor
Our trees, woodlands and forests play a vital role in providing nature-based solutions to the climate and biodiversity emergencies. They store carbon, are homes to wildlife, provide timber, inspire art and are great places for recreation. This award celebrates our sustainable forestry and woodland champions and is open to applications from individuals, businesses, communities or organisations who are creating and/or managing woodlands. Whoever you are, you will be going above and beyond standard practice, and placing nature and wildlife at the heart of your activities. You might be a wildlife-friendly forester, a community making the most of your local woodlands or a farmer and other land manager exploring innovative new approaches which bring benefits for wildlife and people. Applicants with forests and woodlands of all types and scales will be considered, from small woodlands or urban planting schemes through to landscape-scale projects.
Health and Wellbeing Award
This new award recognises the positive relationship between nature and wellbeing and celebrates initiatives that actively encourage people to engage with nature to support their mental and/or physical health. We welcome applications from individuals, communities or organisations who can demonstrate clearly the positive impact of nature connection on health. In particular, we are keen to hear from projects which focus on inclusion and provide innovative approaches to ensuring nature is accessible to all, whether connecting with nature at home, digitally, or outdoors. By enabling people to experience the direct health benefits of nature, it is hoped that the initiative will inspire people to want to protect it, helping wildlife thrive and further cultivating healthier environments for all.
Sponsored by The Ardmore
Awarded to the most innovative project, initiative, practice, or technique (management or otherwise) that has aided nature conservation. Entries for this award need to stand out as being different – perhaps you have pioneered a project that is the first of its kind or you have approached something that has been done before in a new way.
Nature and Climate Action Award
Sponsored by ScottishPower
We are facing a nature and climate emergency that cannot be ignored. The unprecedented loss in biodiversity and the persistent rise in global temperatures require us to take urgent action. This award recognises the link between the crises facing nature and the climate and Scottish nature-based solutions to them. Individuals, projects or organisations who are nominated should demonstrate clear, definitive steps that are both saving nature and mitigating or adapting to climate change.
Awards in this category will reflect the urgency to act, have impact in multiple sectors, and implement ideas or innovative technology to create a solution.
Youth and Education Award
This award honours schools and youth groups which can demonstrate how they have made a real difference to the conservation and sustainability of Scotland’s wildlife and habitats. These projects need to show through evidence and outcomes what they have done in nature, through nature, about nature and for nature.
This could be through fundraising for a conservation-related project, partnership working, best practice in hands-on delivery of learning for sustainability or connecting young people to the natural world. If you are an Eco School or a member of the Green Flag scheme, your application must show how the platform has been used to deliver additional activities to those expected as part of this scheme.
Tell us why your group is head and shoulders above the rest and spread the word on the results you have achieved!