The RFS is an educational charity, with a mission to inspire passion and excellence in woodland management. Our work encourages understanding and enjoyment of the trees and woods that are such an important part of all our lives.
We have ambitious plans to expand our educational work, to reach children, teenagers and all those adults with an active interest in woodland management. To fulfil our plans will cost £1.4 million by 2020. We rely on the support and generosity of people like you to reach this target. Any contribution you can make will be greatly valued.
You may choose to give money to our general funds, to afford us maximum flexibility to use it where it is most needed.
Or, you may particularly want to support one of our 3 programmes of work detailed below. This is equally welcome, and we will gladly send you updates on progress. To read more about our work over the last year please see the Annual Review.
If you are able to consider a regular gift, by direct debit, this is particularly welcome, as it helps us to predict our income levels and plan work accordingly.
If you would like to make a gift to support our work please click here.
Future Foresters aims to strengthen the pipeline of skilled workers entering forestry, to ensure we have a workforce that can meet the challenges of the 21st century. We know that 53% of forestry workers are over 40, and only 11% are under 25.
The Future Foresters programme is well underway thanks to the generous support of RFS members, and the Prince’s Countryside Fund. We have appointed our first Future Foresters Project Officer, Adam Todd, who joined the RFS in January 2016. He is now well-established leading this project.
Since launching Future Foresters in September 2015, we have:
Reached over 500 students at 10 academic institutions and 9 careers fairs
Created and launched the online Forestry and Arboriculture Careers Guide, and attracted over 12,000 visitors
Hosted 4 students to undertake work experience placements in summer 2016
Reviewed the RFS qualifications offer
Initiated a pilot project with Kent Woodland Education Scheme to support their training programme for forestry apprentices
Awarded 10 Spencer bursaries to students to enable them to attend RFS conferences in 2015 and 2016
Revisited all the sites involved in Conifers for Colleges, to capture data after the first year of this research project investigating the performance of different species of conifers
Raised over £135,000 to fund the Future Foresters programme
Future Foresters is already engaging young people, supporting them to gain qualifications and experience, and providing practical learning opportunities to students. With further funds we can do much more, including reaching secondary schools to raise the profile of forestry as a career option.
If you would like to donate to Future Foresters click here.
If you prefer to give by phone please call us on 01295 678588, or by post please send a cheque (payable to Royal Forestry Society) to the RFS at Hay Barns, Home Farm Drive, Upton Estate, Banbury, OX15 6HU.
Teaching Trees builds the next generation’s awareness and appreciation of the value of trees and woods. Primary school children are taken on a guided woodland visit, and taught tree identification, habitat diversity, and what it means to ‘manage’ a wood, through activities such as measuring trees, den building, the 'Squirrel Game' and craft.
Since 2014, we have raised over £150,000 towards the cost of Teaching Trees, and our fundraising is going from strength to strength. We have taken over 7500 children on woodland visits, and we have recruited new Education Officers in the Midlands and Herefordshire. We have recently appointed new Education Officers in Cumbria, Northumberland, Gloucestershire and Herefordshire. But we want to give all primary children across England and Wales, the chance to learn about well-managed woods. This is an ambitious expansion plan, and we will need to raise further funds to do it.
£10 per month will help to improve the teaching resources for all our Education Officers
£20 per month pays for one class to go on a Teaching Trees woodland visit per year
£50 per month pays for 75 children to experience a Teaching Trees visit each year
£83 per month (£1000 per year) will enable us to run at least 4 woodland visits each year
£8,000 per year is the average cost of setting up Teaching Trees in a new area. Anyone considering giving at this level should please contact us to ensure that Teaching Trees is viable in the area you have in mind.
If you would like to donate to Teaching Trees click here.
If you prefer to give by phone please call us on 01295 678588, or by post by sending a cheque (payable to Royal Forestry Society Teaching Trees) to the RFS at Hay Barns, Home Farm Drive, Upton Estate, Banbury, OX15 6HU.
Wise about Woods appeal
Wise about Woods is about equipping people to bring more woodland into management. Many people now acquire woods without prior experience, or they own woods as part of a wider mix. In our experience they have a strong desire to manage them well, if only they knew how to do so profitably.
Wise about Woods will create and disseminate practical information on sustainable forestry, primarily for this audience. It builds on the founding ethos of the RFS – information freely shared with like-minded people. We will facilitate sharing through formal and informal training events, online resources and printed materials. 4 training courses were held in 2016 which were well-attended, and feedback has been excellent.
In addition we will work with selected Higher Education Institutions to co-fund and commission research that furthers our understanding of environmental change and appropriate responses to it. Climate change is going to transform woodland management over the course of this century. It is vital that we understand and respond to that.
If you would like to donate to Wise about Woods click here.
If you believe in the ethos of the RFS, and if you care about protecting our trees and woods for future generations, you may wish to consider leaving a legacy to the RFS, after providing for family and friends, of course.
No matter how small, your gift will make a real difference. The combined generosity of the many people who have remembered the RFS in their Will amounts to something of immense value. Recently legacy income has had a transformational effect on the ambition and the achievements of the Society.
To find out more click here