Businesses in Bristol and South West now able to help local community projects as part of 2015 European Green Capital Year

12 August 2015

  • Businesses can pick from over 150 local community projects hosted on Neighbourly.com

  • Some 66 projects have already received funding; with over £147,000 committed

Bristol, 12 August 2015: Neighbourly.com – the platform that connects local community projects with companies which want to make a difference – is calling upon local businesses to get involved in European Green Capital Year and find a project or cause to support in their local community.

Projects come in all shapes and sizes, from community picnics, renovation of bus shelters or food surplus redistribution, to transport sharing schemes, music festivals and educational events. Some projects need funds – sometimes as little as £250 – while others simply need volunteer’s time or resources such as surplus food. Using Neighbourly, local businesses and individual residents can check what projects need help nearby – and then contribute whatever they can to the projects they choose.

Nick Davies, founder of Neighbourly, said: “Many local businesses simply don’t know where to get started, or how simple it is to find a project relevant to their location or type of business. We’ve gathered 150 local projects that fit with the themes of Green Capital Year together in one place: simply visit neighbourly.com and search ‘Green Capital’, then browse the projects to find an activity which makes sense for your business. Businesses supporting community action see great improvements in employee engagement and are more resilient given the bonds they have with the communities they serve.”

“Over 60 projects have been backed so far, the vast majority through neighbourhood partnership funds contributed by the city council. That’s a great start but I’m certain Bristol’s business community, whether big companies, small businesses or even the self-employed, will see the value of making a difference to a project local to their customers and employees,” Davies adds.

As part of the commitment to European Green Capital Year, Neighbourly has been piloting a local surplus food redistribution programme with retailers and cafes – so far over two tonnes of surplus food, that would otherwise have been wasted, has reached people and charities in the city that needed it.

Suzy Page, director at Re:Work, a Knowle-based social enterprise that works to help people find their way back to employment or education, commented: “Re:Work relies on its volunteers to keep going and our volunteers rely on us for new skills and opportunities. As part of the Neighbourly food pilot, we have been able to connect with local retailers that have allowed us to collect foods that would usually be too close to date to be sold, but are still edible, which we can provide for our volunteers and users. We’re very grateful for this support. Already this pilot is showing that even the smallest amounts of food can be used for the common good.”

“There are so many community groups and not-for-profit organisations like ours that could benefit from being linked up with local businesses – not just for food but for other resources too, including volunteer support and to seek funding for specific activities that can make a difference.”

Check out examples of projects below, or review the full list here.

  • BCR NP Streetscene Group is an enthusiastic group of volunteers that helps keep the local area clean and tidy, removing and painting over graffiti and keeping pathways clear of vegetation. The group is looking to raise £500 and 4 volunteer days of support from local businesses.

  • Noel’s Multi Coloured Swap Shop will be a half-day swap shop and repair café, run by local social enterprise RE:WORK. The group aims to share skills such as carpentry and electronics, promote volunteering to the community, and needs £600 to help support the event

  • Youth Moves - Urban Escape Environmental Hub is a project designed to get young people involved in all things green such as planting and growing, making craft items from recycled materials and promoting green spaces through activities such as bush craft, camps and outdoor pursuits. They need £550 for some roundhouse benches – and are also looking to create an outdoor cooking area.

  • Grow Bristol is looking to transform a disused industrial site near Temple Meads into a productive urban farm and space for training and public engagement. The campaign hopes to raise £10,000 and seeks volunteers to help with the work.