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The North York Moors National Park Authority Achieve Level One of the Social Value Certificate

The North York Moors National Park Authority looks after this beautiful corner of Yorkshire, helping to protect and conserve it, while encouraging people to enjoy and understand how special it is.

Why have you decided to undertake the Social Value Certificate organisational pathway?

We have decided to undertake the Social Value Certificate programme pathway. We have piloted two innovative schemes to engage families and young people in the conservation of the North York Moors National Park. Whilst we can assume that these individuals are enjoying the schemes (through feedback questionnaires and repeat interactions) we are very interested in understanding the wider social value of the schemes for the participants and their parents. We want to understand the change that is being made to their lives and how we can improve the schemes for them and future participants.

How have you formalised your commitment for Level One of the Social Value Certificate? What practices or processes are you putting in place?

We have made a commitment to evaluate and monitor the social value of the two schemes mentioned below. Our Chief Executive and members of the National Park Authority have committed to support the National Park Education Service in doing so. Regular updates/reporting will be provided to the senior leadership team and members training.

Are there any other specific projects you are doing at the moment that are related to SROI/social value?

The programme involves two schemes. One is for families with children aged 4-11 called the Explorer Club and the other is for young people aged 11-17 called Young Rangers. Through both schemes we aim to increase the participants understanding and love for the North York Moors National Park and a desire to help look after it, whilst making choices to benefit the wider environment. Families are taken on a journey through their 6 months in the Explorer Club. They experience the different habitats of the National Park, take part in environmental games and self -discovery and undertake practical conservation tasks to improve and enhance the Park. During the 6 months they work towards Level 1 of the John Muir Award. After 6 months they are fully fledge volunteers and can join our Explorer Volunteer work force. Through the Young Ranger Scheme the young people also take part in practical conservation tasks, learn new skills e.g. navigation, wildlife surveys, first aid and safety on the hills and understand the work of the rangers. They too are able to work towards the different levels of the John Muir award. The schemes enable children, families and young people to have a continuous volunteering journey with the National Park. Once they reach 18 they can then join the adult volunteering community, already skilled and knowledgeable about their National Park.

What have you learnt so far in your commitment for Level One of the Social Value Certificate? Is there anything that you believe you will gain or find useful in the next steps you will take for Level 2 of the Social Value Certificate?

Appreciating that a commitment to understanding social value involves a much wider group of individuals to those delivering the specific programme. That ensuring Chief Exec and Member buy-in guarantees that the understanding of social value is embedded throughout the organisation and as such is robustly reported on and discussed. That central to our commitment are the stakeholders and that a method for evaluating and accounting the programme is integral to build and improve on the social value which is created.

Andy Wilson (North York Moors National Park Chief Executive) says: “ We are delighted to have achieved level one of the Social Value Certificate with Social Value International. Participating in the certificate pathway will enable us to understand, improve and maximise the social value created through our families’ and young people’s engagement programme.

For more information, contact:

Heather McNiff

h.mcniff@northyorkmoors.org.uk

Head of Education and Youth Engagement

01439 772700

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