The UK is losing the fundamental field skills that enable both amateur naturalists and professional wildlife organisations to monitor the health and well-being of our wildlife and their habitats. Funded by Heritage Lottery Fund, The ‘Learning Environments in Marine, Urban and Rural areas’ (LEMUR) project is an accredited training scheme that offers a fast track route to developing the necessary skills and competency required to gain a professional post in nature conservation.
The project provides eighteen 9-month work-based accredited training placements a year which are hosted by a broad range of local heritage conservation organisations. Each placement receives a combination of ‘on-the-job’ professional experience and mentoring from their host organisation. In order to kick-start this professional experience the project partners deliver tailored training focused upon species identification, wildlife habitat survey, habitat management and heritage interpretation (education) skills.
To date Gwent Wildlife Trust has been host to 3 trainees, with all going on to secure paid work within environmental conservation. Assisting with the work of the Wider Environment Team, trainees have the opportunity to contribute to the conservation of the ecological heritage of Gwent whilst gaining a variety of key skills in nature conservation including species identification, Phase 1 survey and GIS skills.
LEMUR has secured HLF funding to move the project into a new phase of development ‘LEMUR+’, with a focus on wildlife technology and skills. Through this funding, Ambios Ltd in partnership with a variety of environmental organisations, are able to offer 36 placements of either 3 or 9 months to support people who want to work with nature.
Click on the video below to see our 2014 LEMUR Charlene talk about her time working with Gwent Wildlife Trust and how she feels it has helped in her pursuit of a career in nature conservation!
Video property of Hereford Wildlife Trust and the LEMUR project.
For more information about the project, visit the LEMUR+ website.