Jess brought along her minibeasts to give children direct hands-on contact with wildlife 1/3
The children enjoyed a minibeast hunt in the Sure Centre grounds, with Jess and the education team 2/3
NWT Vice President, John Snape and senior education officer, Annabel Hill with the lottery funding 3/3

Jess French joins Norfolk Wildlife Trust as Children’s Ambassador


Tuesday 01 May, 2018




Our new Sure Start project will engage with children and families at the very start of their lives, giving them hands-on, crucial contact with the natural world.

Norfolk Wildlife Trust is delighted to announce CBeebies presenter and children’s author, Jess French as its first ever Children’s Ambassador. Jess will support our new Sure Start with Nature project, which highlights the importance of children having access to nature. The project, which is funded by the National Lottery through the Big Lottery Fund will deliver a number of activities to help support and improve children’s development.

Jess said: “As Children’s Ambassador for NWT I am delighted to support the exciting new programme with Sure Start, which introduces children to the natural world from the very beginning of their development.  Amid this fast-paced world of technology and ultra-connectivity, I am so pleased that we are able to offer young children a way to calm their busy minds, engage with plants and animals and make real and important connections with nature.”

Today we began the first Children And Nature project, working with the under-fives at Sure Start centres in Great Yarmouth, Thetford and Corpusty. Jess brought along minibeasts including a praying mantis and scuttling cockroach to let the children have direct hands-on contact with wildlife. The children also enjoyed a minibeast hunt in the grounds of the centre, armed with brushes and bug pots.

Senior education officer at NWT, Annabel Hill said: “we are really excited to be able to work with children and families at the very start of their lives. We’ll be running monthly interactive sessions, sensory play and nature-themed walks. Coming up is a session on bees, which will involve much buzzing around, performing a waggle dance, and making wax candles. We’ll also be providing treasure baskets for our baby explorers, which will contain natural objects such as acorns and conkers for them to handle. Part of the project is working with new parents to improve their health and well-being by having contact with nature, such as on wildlife walks and visits to nature reserves.”

This is the first project of NWT’s Children And Nature fund, which was established by NWT Vice President, John Snape and his family to help children and young people enjoy and value the nature that surrounds them in Norfolk.  NWT also received a grant of £7,770 of National Lottery funding and further support from the Norwich branch of White Stuff, specifically for the Sure Start project.  

Chief Executive of Norfolk Wildlife Trust, Brendan Joyce said: “This funding is fantastic news for local children and local wildlife. Research shows that children today have far fewer opportunities than previous generations to explore and discover wildlife and spend much less time outside. We are delighted that it gives us the ability to work with Sure Start Centres which do an excellent job engaging the very young and their families.”
Share this

Top news stories

2018-06-30 National nature challenge brea National nature challenge breaks record
Saturday 30 June, 2018
This year’s 30 Days Wild is a record breaker. The challenge, which ends today, saw more participants than ever ...
2018-06-27 Summer Spirit as Cley calls to Summer Spirit as Cley calls to art and nature lovers
Wednesday 27 June, 2018
Just five weeks until our long summer weekend of wildlife and creativity at Cley! Thursday 2nd till Sunday 5th August...
2018-06-25 Broads’ projects get more than Broads’ projects get more than £10,000 to keep the National Park special
Monday 25 June, 2018
Norfolk Wildlife Trust has received £1,200 for buoyancy aids and education resources for children to experience...
2018-06-22 Go Go Sydney Long Ears Go Go Sydney Long Ears
Friday 22 June, 2018
Sydney Long Ears – Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s beautiful GoGoHares sculpture named in memory of the Trust&rs...
2018-06-19 It’s in the bag for wildlife t It’s in the bag for wildlife thanks to local shoppers
Tuesday 19 June, 2018
Thanks to local shoppers, two Norfolk Wildlife Trust projects have received the maximum funding from the Tesco Bags o...
2018-06-08 Battle to protect wildlife at Battle to protect wildlife at sea receives boost today
Friday 08 June, 2018
Norfolk Wildlife Trust welcomes possibility of 41 new Marine Conservation Zones Today the government has launched a ...
2018-06-01 Summer garden wildlife survey Summer garden wildlife survey to help protect species in Norfolk
Friday 01 June, 2018
Norfolk Wildlife Trust launches a new wildlife spotter survey to record sightings in gardens of hedgehogs, peacock bu...
2018-05-30 50,000 people – and rising – s 50,000 people – and rising – sign up to go wild in June
Wednesday 30 May, 2018
As well-known names back national nature challenge 30 Days Wild Naturalists, TV presenters and authors are backin...
2018-05-22 Wildlife in Common Wildlife in Common
Tuesday 22 May, 2018
A two year project celebrating Norfolk’s commons and their wildlife and heritage has begun,  run by Norfol...
2018-05-01 Jess French joins Norfolk Wild Jess French joins Norfolk Wildlife Trust as Children’s Ambassador
Tuesday 01 May, 2018
Our new Sure Start project will engage with children and families at the very start of their lives, giving them hands...
2018-04-27 County Wildlife Sites threaten County Wildlife Sites threatened by government planning changes
Friday 27 April, 2018
From ancient woodlands and flower meadows to wildlife oases in our towns and cities, there are thousands of quiet, of...
2018-04-25 Nigel and Joshua’s Lad join th Nigel and Joshua’s Lad join the grazing ponies on local wildlife site
Wednesday 25 April, 2018
Two Dartmoor Ponies are settling in to their new home at Litcham Common in West Norfolk, where they will graze the he...