“Communities learning, caring for all life & celebrating shared heritage”
The Dawn Chorus purpose is:
We strive to enable our communities and partners to contribute to activities which bring social, environmental and economic welfare benefits to increase quality of life and happiness. We encourage responsible, compassionate lifestyles and sustainable practices which demonstrate that human, animal and environmental welfare is linked.
We seek to improve understanding in our communities of heritage landscape, biodiversity and habitats, area distinctiveness, culture, history and archeology, at landscape or site levels. We use outdoor learning & any other appropriate means to improve our countryside, natural, cultural & historical heritage, environment, wildlife & animal welfare.
Above: The River Trent at Fiskerton.
Dawn Chorus has extensive experience of strategic planning, operational delivery and building robust organisational systems. We promote inclusion and challenge poverty, specializing in programme management, co-production and facilitating cross sector partnerships. We are proud to be in partnership with over 339 partners, each is independent but can work cooperatively with us as part of our programmes; the partnership between Dawn Chorus (established 1992) & Juno Enterprise (established 1985 & celebrating 30 years in 2015) is a good example. Juno Enterprise has been a delivery agent with Dawn Chorus programmes for 22 years.
Dawn Chorus Educational Initiative CIC offers two services which complement each other:
The services strive to increase community based natural & cultural heritage education by offering ten programmes, each with ten projects. Each project has ten units and units are delivered ten times…that is 10,000 beneficial outcomes.
UNESCO states that: “Heritage is the shared wealth of human kind”; this concept fits well with our CIC model.
Above: Old Ox ancient monument, Nottinghamshire & sea buckthorn on the Lincolnshire salt marsh coast where our volunteers enjoy species monitoring.
As a Community Interest Company, Dawn Chorus Educational Initiative has chosen a business model that delivers benefits whilst being sustainable. We are part of the network of CICs which contribute to the modern business community. CICs deliver social, welfare, economic and environmental benefits, locally and internationally. The CIC business model is positive & right for the current economic & social landscape; being sustainable, beneficial & socially enterprising. A CIC has four potential income & service delivery streams all of which Dawn Chorus has built into its business plan.
1 & 2: Many social enterprises are run as CIC’s to enable drawdown of funding or grants & attract social investment.
3 & 4: CICs also operate as any other regular Ltd companies, selling products and services. Entrepreneurs can be more responsive, without the bureaucracy of countless meetings, trustees, and charity restrictions, yet they remain charitable, asset locked & regulated members of the third sector. The work of CICs is carried out for the benefit of others not primarily for the executive director or any shareholders.
Dawn Chorus is a member of the Association of Community Interest Companies, who say that: “Community Interest Companies are one of the fastest growing community oriented enterprise movements in the country”. 100 new CICs register monthly. In Jan 2012 6000 CICs were registered with the regulator. Dawn Chorus is advantaged by being part of this thriving cutting edge movement. CICs can be not-for- profit, for-profit, co-operative, mutual, employee led, limited by guarantee or PLCs limited by shares. CICs can be small sole trader organisations, multi million organisations with thousands of employees, mutuals or Social Enterprises.
Dawn Chorus is not-for-profit, working nationally & internationally to deliver specified local community benefits & international cooperation. We work with East Midland communities, Staffordshire to the Lincolnshire Coast and Doncaster to Northampton. We are limited by guarantee. Companies holding the status CIC limited by guarantee are held in an asset lock; this ensures that the assets benefit the community.
Dawn Chorus Educational Initiative CIC shares knowledge, built up over thirty years, about delivering learning experiences relating to living, working & delivering benefits sustainably.
Above: outdoor activities, photographed by one of our supporters.
2. Community Support & Programme Management:
We seek to showcase the community and are committed to delivering work alone & in much valued partnerships. We support partners by sharing best practice, increasing excellence & knowledge & building cooperative coalitions. We involve individuals & signpost them to organizations & services.
We assist in creating well-being, quality of life, learning, community benefits & local pride.
Above: this project worked with the community to challenge antisocial behaviour and improve a community green space.
3. Community Learning:
We build community & family opportunities. Our aim is to encourage & support life long -learning & activities which offer enjoyment. We promote access to education & skills improvement in local communities, offering resources for learning. We develop public interest & responsibility & involve new people, raising awareness & understanding. We maximize social & economic benefits through capacity building, training, personal development & community learning courses. Basic skills learning is embedded in much of our work, including practical skills building, arts & craft activities & outdoor projects such as recording biodiversity & historical features, community mapping, photographing ancient trees, horticultural & animal welfare tasks.
Below: Laxton church tombs, picture below taken by volunteer on our Spring heritage trail, can you see the knight, his lady and the lion?
We encourage opportunities for volunteering & offer infrastructure support to in-house & partner volunteer programmes. Our volunteer projects are based on local need & enhance communities. Volunteering work complements each element of our work plan.
Above: Dawn Chorus facilitated “Be Active, Be Healthy” riding activity.
Our healthy life styles & well-being ethos is rolled out through opportunities for green exercise, heritage activities, access to the heritage landscape, cultural & arts activities, outdoor learning, hands on physical activities & training, nature walks & nature courses. We promote heritage horticulture & healthy eating, encouraging healthy life-styles & wellbeing. Excluded groups, such as mental health service users, ethnic minority groups, and people in isolated rural communities are target beneficiaries. We promote mental well-being, suggesting ways that people can try to foster tranquility, cope with pressures & challenge nature deficit disorder.
6. Sustainability,Climate Change & Eco-Philosophy:
We encourage sustainable & compassionate lifestyles & eating food from compassionate, responsible & sustainable sources. We stimulate carbon responsible policies & living. We strive to increase understanding of the importance of reducing consumption & recycling. We enrich biodiversity by encouraging wildlife & wildflower rich areas & sustainable management
Our CEO wrote the Nottinghamshire Biodiversity Action Plan, Habitats Action Plan for Traditional Orchards. Above: A traditional orchard in Nottinghamshire; below: damson orchard blossom Calverton.
7. Fostering International Co-operation in Our Communities:
We strive to roll out all of our work strands in a beneficial model. We exchange best practice & information to stimulate learning in sustainability, horticulture, healthy eating, well being, animal welfare, nature conservation & cultural heritage. We foster voluntary information networks, primarily for women and children, that may reach Native American communities, Pakistan and Africa, including Ethiopia, Kenya, Zambia, Cameroon and Malawi and parts of Europe. The purpose is to involve East Midland communities to extend awareness & learning and share skills.
8. Wildlife & Animal Welfare:
This programme complements our natural heritage; climate change & sustainability work & underpins the compassionate, ethical, cooperative & educational culture that we seek to foster. To promote welfare for all creatures. To offer volunteering & training opportunities & infrastructure support to partners. To complement our learning programmes, especial the healthy plant-based diet & lifestyles unit in our well being programme & the international equity unit within our international cooperation programme.
A rescued goose above & hens below.
9. The Arts & Cultural Heritage:
We involve people to increase understanding & enjoyment of heritage landscape features, cultural activities, folklore & tradition, stories, plays, archaic & local language & beliefs reflected in the landscape, practical visual arts, design, art history, traditional crafts, ceramics, music, literature, rural skills, heritage cookery, historic buildings, history & archaeology. This fosters knowledge, community & voluntary participation and improves interpretation & learning about conservation. We offering outdoor sustainability projects, often targeting deprived communities.
Below: our volunteer sewing bee is topical & attracting interest.
The East Midlands has many interesting heritage landscape features; such as the one pictured above at Bradgate Park.
10. The Landscape & Natural Heritage:
This programme covers flora, fauna & heritage landscape. Our projects aim to increase understanding of & conservation of the natural environment, heritage landscapes, habitats, special trees & heritage horticulture involving traditional orchards & organic, wildlife gardening with heirloom seed. We invite community participation to link people with landscapes, in, for example, the Dumble communities of Nottinghamshire. We involve those who lack skills or do not access the countryside or cultural events. Our outdoor learning activities increase pleasure & safeguard natural heritage & target species. We put into action Habitat Action Plans & Species Action Plans & enrich biodiversity, to improve our countryside’s natural and historical heritage for the community.
“We hope that you have found this to be of interest and invite you to visit our home pages to catch up with the projects and find out how you can get involved in supporting our work. Thank you.”
Celia Eisinger, Norma Saunders, Paddy Tipping, Roy Turner.
We have seven members on our Advisory Forum.
Norma Saunders, BA (Hons.), Cert. M Dir., FRSA.