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Council picks up social responsibility award

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South Derbyshire District Council has picked up an International Corporate Social Responsibility Silver Excellence Award for the work it has delivered through the Free Tree Scheme with the National Forest Company.

The ceremony took place at St Paul’s Cathedral, London earlier this week (Monday 1 July) where the Chair of the Council accepted the award from the Corporate Social Responsibility Society on behalf of the Council.

The Corporate Social Responsibility Society is part of the Green Organisation which has been established since 1994 as an international, independent, non-profit, non-political, environment group, dedicated to recognising, rewarding and promoting environmental best practice around the world.

The International Corporate Social Responsibility Awards are presented to organisations that have a heart: caring organisations that use their position to help their colleagues, communities, customers, the environment and the less fortunate.

There will also be a Parliamentary follow-up ceremony in November.

The award was received in recognition of the popular Free Tree Scheme which the Council and the National Forest Company have been running for residents, schools and businesses in South Derbyshire since 2001.

The scheme has enabled, approximately 18,000 trees to be planted in peoples’ gardens, around schools, and in the grounds of community centres. All these trees have a value and purpose in attracting native wildlife and providing food, interest, and colour for people to enjoy. They are important in helping boost wellbeing and helping shape the environment of South Derbyshire.

A Council spokesperson said: “We’re incredibly proud of the close collaboration with the National Forest Company and the hard work of our staff who have made it possible for the Free Tree Scheme to flourish and be recognised by this award.

“The scheme is a great way for everyone to be able to bring the National Forest into their own garden or into a small pot by their front door and is much loved by many residents across South Derbyshire.”

Gill Forrester, Community and Wellbeing Manager for the National Forest Company, said: “The National Forest is immensely proud to collaborate with South Derbyshire District Council on its award-winning Free Tree Scheme. Winning the International Corporate Social Responsibility Excellence Award 2024 highlights the initiative’s impact and popularity, and the dedication of all involved.

“We always say life is better with trees and it appears that the public and judges agree!”

Kate Allies from the Council’s Environmental Education Project added: “Delivering the Free Tree Scheme is an annual highlight for us as we love choosing the trees, giving them away and hearing how much residents, schools and businesses value them.

“We are deeply committed to the National Forest and nurturing and improving the environment in South Derbyshire, so we are very pleased to receive such a fitting award.”

The now award-winning Free Tree Scheme for 2024 will open at the end of September - people will be able to apply online or by phone.

Pictured – Kate Allies, the Council’s Environment Engagement Manager and the Chair of the Council.


3 July 2024

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