Burnley Eco Warriors
In March 2019 Burnley Boys and Girls Club was awarded £15,000 from the Powering our Communities Fund for their Eco Warriors project.
Led by the young club members, the project will give them the knowledge and skills they need to reduce their own carbon footprint, and to become eco warriors in their community. The funding is also being used to reduce the carbon footprint of the club’s facilities.
The role of Electricity North West
Following the launch of our community energy strategy last year, we announced the Powering our Communities Fund to support projects that put community and local energy at the heart of communities. In particular, the fund is intended for projects that demonstrate how they can engage communities in energy issues; support vulnerable customers and/or reduce fuel poverty; or deliver new ways of working, fit for a smart, flexible low carbon grid.
The fund will provide some much needed resources into the development of community energy projects across the region and will help increase awareness and understanding of the benefits and possibilities that community energy can bring. A total of six successful projects received a share of £71,000, announced in March 2019.
What is community energy and how does this project fit the bill?
We see community energy as community-led projects or initiatives to reduce, manage, generate or purchase energy. Community energy projects focus on engagement and benefits to the local area and communities.
By developing the knowledge and skills of young people to help them learn how to reduce their carbon footprint and giving them the confidence to engage with others, this project will promote the key messages of carbon emissions reduction and energy efficiency to the wider community.
Organisation behind the project
One of East Lancashire’s oldest youth charities, Burnley Boys and Girls Club aims to promote and support young people through education, recreation and wellbeing. The club delivers weekly sessions, workshops and one-to-one development sessions and holds regular sports activities, social and fun sessions to empower the young people in their care.
Background and detailed description of the project
As part of the Eco Warriors project, the club has now revamped its facilities to become more environmentally friendly with the installation of state-of-the-art eco lights for its indoor playing area. The heating system will also be replaced with an energy efficient low emission alternative.
The second part of the project is to develop the knowledge and skills of the young club members to provide them with an understanding of the importance of reducing carbon emissions and to help them take control of their own carbon footprint. This will be achieved through a programme of training sessions and workshops. Role play sessions will help give them confidence to act as eco warriors so they can share that knowledge with family and friends, local businesses and the wider community.
The club members are already such committed eco warriors that they decided to sell their minibus to reduce their carbon footprint and use the £10,000 proceeds to co-fund the new project.
Graham Vernon, the club’s manager believes the new facilities are already having a positive impact on the club members and the community. But the benefits from the project will be demonstrated by recording data from the installation of the new eco-friendly lights and heating which will serve as a learning platform for the eco warriors to build upon.
To deliver the Eco Warriors project, Burnley Boys & Girls Club will be working with a number of partners including a local energy supplier and carbon trust partner and two youth workers.