The Green Communities Fund aims to provide money to kick-start sustainable community-led projects. It is being launched this month taking in the rural areas of Wrexham county borough as well as Flintshire, Denbighshire and Conwy.
Towns and villages across the region, which includes Chirk and the Ceiriog Valley, the area from Bangor on Dee to the Shropshire border and Llangollen are being invited to submit their proposals for schemes which can range from creating bee gardens to bio-diversity corridors and bicycle networks.
The project is being administered by rural development agency Cadwyn Clwyd with money from the Welsh Government Rural Communities Rural Development Programme funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and Welsh Government.
Howard Sutcliffe, of the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, said: “The time is right now as we’ve entered a world of climate change and green infrastructure. This project is all about improving the quality of life, especially after the pandemic.
“This project really brings green values into the community and we will see the benefits on the ground for all the community such as tree-planting, electric charging points and projects everyone can benefit from.”
Project Lead Haf Roberts, of Cadwyn Clwyd, said: “The message is to bring people and nature together because one of the lessons from Covid is how important our green spaces are to our physical and mental well-being.
“The quality of the local environment directly affects us so this initiative aims to help improve and enhance community green spaces, strengthen local biodiversity and mitigate the effects of climate change.
“The projects need to be community-led so that local people have a sense of ownership and ensure they continue to provide value over time.”
“We are looking for good ideas that communities can get involved with to transform their local environment.
“These can range from developing community gardens and orchard planting to energy efficient improvements to community buildings.
“Improvements that enhance access to services and facilities will also be considered in the context of greening the local environment.
“We want community groups to be innovative with ideas around using their green spaces in interesting and inventive ways and encouraging all members of their locality to take part and benefit from this activity."
Since 1995 Cadwyn Clwyd has attracted nearly £30 million in European and domestic funding for North East Wales’s rural areas across sectors such as the environment, food and drink, tourism and rural services to support communities at the grass root level.