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Blue Influencers Scheme

Launching the Blue Influencers Scheme in Morecambe, Lancashire with the help of pupils from St Mary’s RC Primary School and staff from The Ernest Cook Trust

The Blue Influencers Scheme will help address the specific environmental concerns raised by young people living in coastal, river and estuary communities.

These areas are likely to be severely affected by climate change and are experiencing floods, raised sea levels and coastal erosion as well as challenges for people, coastal economies and local industry.

Evidence suggests that despite living in proximity to the ocean, many deprived coastal communities do not feel welcome in these blue spaces or connected to their immediate environments.

The Scheme aims to remove barriers to accessing the outdoors, while helping young people create deep, lasting and meaningful connections to the natural environment via their local coasts and rivers by giving them a voice to make a change in their community, and for the planet.

Our Influencers Schemes were borne out of a desire to help young people realise their potential to positively impact the environment through youth social action. Influencers learn new skills and gain experience and confidence. Their projects benefit communities while helping them create lasting and meaningful connections with the natural environment.

Having run the Green Influencers Scheme for the last three years, we are now launching the Blue Influencers Scheme as its successor.

This new Scheme will fund 22 Blue Mentor posts based in Host Organisations across England to work with 4,000 young people across three years, supporting groups of young people in their youth-led environmental social action projects in coastal communities and on ‘blue’ environmental issues.

We are currently in the process of reviewing Expressions of Interest from potential Host Organisations. As a youth-led scheme, all applications are being assessed by our Youth Advisory Board which includes members aged 14-20.

In due course, successful Host Organisations will be given grant funding towards the employment of a Blue Mentor, whose role is to recruit, support and facilitate Blue Influencers (target age 10-14 year-olds) within their community. Together, they will devise, develop and implement environmental social action projects, with access to further funding.

The deadline for initial Expressions of Interest from Host Organisations has now passed.

The #iwill Fund is made possible thanks to £66M joint investment from The National Lottery Community Fund and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) to support young people to access high quality social action opportunities. The Ernest Cook Trust is acting as a match funder and awarding grants on behalf of the #iwill Fund.

The remainder of this webpage relates to the recently completed Green Influencers Scheme. Please use the above link to find out how you can get involved with our new Blue Influencers Scheme.

Green Influencers Scheme

The scheme funds 40 Green Mentor posts based in Host Organisations across England until mid-2023, supporting groups of young people in their environmental social action projects.

Green Influencers Funding
I find it so valuable that a project such as this which is set up for young people, has a board of young people at the very centre of it helping to make decisions.
Esther, Youth Advisory Board member

The National Lottery Community Fund and the Department of Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) are each investing £25 million seed funding to create the #iwill Fund. The Ernest Cook Trust is acting as a match funder and awarding grants on behalf of the #iwill Fund.

Grant Funding is given to eligible charities and non-profit organisations. These ‘Host Organisations’ employ Green Mentors to recruit, support and oversee groups of Green Influencers within their community. Green Influencers devise, develop and implement environmental social action projects, with access to further funding.

How much Grant Funding will each Host Organisation receive?

The Scheme funds up to £15,000 per year (around 50% of a Green Mentor’s full time salary, including on-costs) plus £3,000 for Host Organisation administrative costs.

The Social Action ‘Habit’

The Green Influencers Scheme aims to make environmental social action a regular, habitual part of young people’s lives

No other generation on this planet has the same sense of urgency as ours. No other generation has the need to express the same concerns, demands and pressures we feel.
Tian, Youth Advisory Board member

By enabling them to make a real difference to their environment, a connection to the natural world is forged together with a sense of responsibility to protect and sustain it through a lifetime of continued social action.

The ripple-effect of the scheme will continue to positively impact communities as Green Influencers become ambassadors for environmental social action, making it a regular, life-long habit.

With independent monitoring and evaluation of all projects to measure their effectiveness, quality and impact, we believe the scheme will become a catalyst for ongoing, sustained social action. Young people are empowered to make a positive difference in their communities and the natural environment for years to come.

The more we act, the more we notice the benefits
Environmental Action Now

We are delighted that the Green Influencers Scheme is now at full capacity for its inaugural three years, with 37 Host Organisations working alongside 40 Green Mentors and a new generation of Green Influencers across the nation. Find out more about the Green Influencer Host Organisations here.

It’s our different experiences and opinions that, when all collated together, make for an unstoppable force leading the Green Influencers Scheme.
Lorna, Youth Advisory Board member

We invite you to watch this video from the #iwill campaign about youth social action. It encapsulates the power and influence of young people when empowered through #iwill programmes, and is the youth led ambition that can be achieved through our match funded #iwill project, the Green Influencers Scheme.

The youth voice is one of the most powerful forces on the planet.
Amy Meek, co-founder of Kids Against Plastic, GIS Conference Speaker 2021

Celebrating reaching our target of recruiting 5000+ Green Influencers at the 2023 Conference

We know that most young people want to take part in youth social action, but only 4 in 10 actually do. This figure is even lower in underserved communities where young people are less able to access the many benefits that social action provides, so their communities don’t enjoy the full benefit of their talent, energy and ideas. 

Most young people just need to be given the opportunity to take part. 

So if you’re a Registered Charity or Non-Profit organisation in an underserved community in England, click on the links below to contact us, or for more information about the scheme and your eligibility.

If you are, or you know of any young people aged 10-14 years who are keen to get involved in environmental social action, click on the map link above to find your nearest Green Mentor, or email us for more information.

Green Influencers Scheme Project Team

Robyn & Suzie

Becoming a Host Organisation

Applications are currently closed. Please contact us if you are interested in being a future Host Organisation.

The Green Influencers Scheme 3rd Annual Conference 2023

This year’s youth-led Conference was a huge success. Thank you to everyone who attended, especially all the speakers, workshop leaders and of course our Conference Committee members who orchestrated the whole event.

Calling all Green Mentors

Because you are crucial to the success of the Green Influencers Scheme, we have compiled a library of really useful material to ensure you get the the best from your Green Influencers and they get the best from you.

Youth Social Action networks

As the scheme grows, regional networks of Green Mentors and Green Influencers are being established across the UK. This vibrant community provides a place to celebrate successes, share ideas, best practice and specialist knowledge.

Stay in touch with the latest news and events:

Together, we’re making a real and long-term positive contribution to our communities and the environment