28 Jun 2024

Recently, the Sustainability and Energy team ran a staff suggestion scheme to engage employees on biodiversity at work and at their schemes. We were very grateful to receive a wide variety of suggestions and two lucky winners were chosen at random.

Our 1st placed winner took home a B&Q voucher and an amazing Biodiversity Pack, generously gifted by Idverde, including a hedgehog home, bird box, insect hotel and wildflower seed packs, thanks to her suggestion of planting on walls and introducing solitary bee hotels. We were glad to share with our winner that within the shared space of our proposed biodiversity projects we actually discovered a naturally formed bee/insect hotel, which is currently in use! We are looking into ways to protect this structure and introduce more at our schemes.

Our runner up was rewarded with a B&Q voucher, for her suggestion of incorporating insect hotels, wildflower planting areas, swift bricks, bird boxes, raised planting beds and honeybee hives into our efforts to support Biodiversity. Some of these proposals are part of the design requirements for our new schemes, and it is great to know the consultation with Ulster Wildlife has increased awareness, education, and acceptance of these measures. 

Other suggestions included beginning to keep compost heaps for sites and schemes with gardens, space being left for hedgehog highways in our new schemes, wildflower and sedum roofs, planting ivy on walls to help with cooling and growing edible plants for wildlife to enjoy.

We want our tenants to embrace biodiversity and help fight back against the biodiversity crisis.

Keep an eye on the summer edition of Choice News for competitions you can get involved in. We have prizes up for grabs for the winners of our Good Neighbour and Best Kept Garden competitions. Not only is this a great way for you to get involved in the fight against biodiversity loss, but it gives you the chance to improve and showcase your gardening skills. These competitions run all summer, to give you a chance to get your garden flourishing, with the winners drawn in August.

If you want any more information or support on biodiversity then please take the time to visit and investigate the below resources:

Ulster Wildlife https://www.ulsterwildlife.org/

RSPB https://www.rspb.org.uk/

Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful https://www.keepnorthernirelandbeautiful.org/

Bats https://www.bats-ni.org.uk/

USPCA https://www.uspca.co.uk/

Wild Belfast https://www.wildbelfast.org/