I’ve been a volunteer with Colne Valley Tree Society for 15 years. After work, getting outside in the fresh air is relaxing and helps with positive mental health.
I was involved in creating a woodland in Marsden commemorating lives lost in WW1, which I thought was something really worthwhile. It was a team effort with the Secretary and Chair of the society, the Woodland Trust and the White Rose Forest. There was also a partnership with the land owner Yorkshire Water.
As a volunteer I wanted to create a viewing point but that was unsuccessful. The tree planting however progressed and a “Trees in Mind” group formed resulting in poetry workshops and wall plaques linking to World War One.
I had frustrations in being unable to complete the viewing point. Things like this can be complicated, time consuming and burdensome for a volunteer.
But teamwork, partnerships and helpful people, getting people on board, enthusiasm and a sense of pride all count toward a growing sense of community.
The Tree Society even got some kudos with some TV coverage.
The society meet and plant trees. There can be up to 30 people meeting on a Saturday.
There are successes and outcomes – from an empty field to one full of trees – it’s really satisfying. It feels marvellous.
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Thank you to Duncan for sharing this story after participating in one of our “How can more people come together to make local places better?” online workshops for Kirklees citizens.