It’s Great Out There Coalition urges projects to apply for 2022 grants programme
The It’s Great Out There Coalition (IGOT) has announced details of the first round of #itsgreatoutthere grants for 2022. Once again, the coalition will support grass roots projects around Europe that will get more people active in nature, through its Outdoor Activity Days (OAD) model. Any non-profit organisation with a suitable initiative can apply for a grant. Applications are now open until 23:45 CET on Friday 28 February.
Since its foundation in 2017,the It's Great Out There Coalition has supported 36 grass roots projects in eight countries, directly introducing 6444 individuals to the outdoors. First introduced in January 2021, Outdoor Activity Days (OAD) are targeted physical activity interventions in nature, designed to get citizens active, sustainably, inclusively and responsibly. OAD are aligned to the latest World Health Organization guidelines on physical activity and are delivered by outdoor professionals, and meeting a clear set of criteria. With support from its members, the coalition was able to deliver 2,628 OAD in 2021 and aims to increase that total this year.
Among the grant recipients in 2021 was True Nature Project, an initiative by the non-profit organisation AKA – Health, Wealth and Oneness CIC, in Nottingham in the UK. AKA teamed up with coalition members Equip Outdoors to propose an ambitious plan to take young people and adults from the inner city and give them access to hiking and other activities in the Peak District, the UK’s oldest National Park. With the support of a grant, the team helped over 250 people to participate during last summer, with some very positive responses from those involved.
AKA commented: “Participants were from all age groups and ethnicities. Some sessions focussed on teenagers, some were for families and children, and others open to all. We had a real mix of people who got involved, with varying levels of experience. The majority had never been to the Peak District before, or any other National Park for that matter, so this was a new experience. The support of an #itsgreatouttheregrant enabled a small new organisation like us to reach and introduce hundreds of people to the great outdoors who otherwise may not have gone there.”
Margo de Lange, It’s Great Out There Coalition policy officer, comments: “We’re really excited to launch the first round of #itsgreatoutthere grants for 2022. Aligning the grants with Outdoor Activity Days last year was very important, as it helped us to demonstrate clear and measurable results for every project that we supported. This was valuable for our members and encouraged them to work closely with non-profit organisations on projects. It also provided us with some brilliant content and evidence that we are using to influence policy development and delivery relating to active lifestyles. I urge anyone who has a project that they think might qualify for an #itsgreatoutthere grant to visit our website and get in touch.”
Grant applications will be reviewed and shortlisted by an independent selection committee and then It’s Great Out There Coalition members will be given the opportunity to rate the projects. The applications that achieve the highest combined score from the selection committee and members will be allocated #itsgreatoutthere grant funding.
Full details of the #itsgreatoutthere grant criteria and application process can be found at www.itsgreatoutthere.com/grants.