Written by Leah Mahon
Published on 11th February 2021
LEADING ENVIRONMENTAL organisations are joining an employment initiative to ensure diversity within the green movement.
Groups such as Friends of the Earth, Client Earth, the RSPB and others will participate in a programme that aims to make the environmental sector more accessible to young people from ethnic minority backgrounds.
The sector has previously been dubbed “too white” with just 3.5% people working in the environment sector identifying as a minority.
The former head of Friends of the Earth, Craig Bennett, said that the sector must escape its white middle-class ghetto.
The employment programmes hope to offer 118 unemployed 16 to 24-year-olds from ethnic minority backgrounds roles in the UK’s environmental sector as they are helped to find positions in a matter of months with placements starting in the next few weeks.
Laura Kravac, the head of programmes at Action for Conservation, one of the partners behind the scheme, said that their mission is always to be inspiring and empowering to young people.
“At a time of record youth unemployment, we’re therefore delighted that this initiative will enable talented people from diverse backgrounds to access high-quality jobs that will transform the sector and make a tangible difference for them and the natural world,” she said.
The partners behind the employment programme Race for Nature’s Recovery aim to have more than 150 young people in roles by the end of the year and have more than half of the placements to become full-time positions.
During their six-month placements the young people will be paid at least the UK living wage and be offered training and career support.
Anna Langridge, from the RSPB, said: “This gives us a great opportunity to be proactively involved in diversifying our organisation and reaching out to a younger generation.
“Like many other organisations, we are actively engaging with how we can reflect the societies we live within, ensuring we build on our engagement and relationships. Our voice and nature’s survival needs diversity, equality and inclusion to truly work. This scheme and our partnership is a step in the right direction.”