The Big Wild Sleepout starts on 16 June and runs until 22 June. With the Summer solstice taking place on 21 June, people sleeping out that night will have the maximum number of daylight hours to spot wildlife and have fun! Supported by Blacks. The Big Wild Sleepout is part of the RSPB’s ‘Giving Nature a Home’ campaign,  aimed at inspiring everyone to do their bit for nature no matter how big their outside space may be.

Giving Nature a Home

Some of our best loved garden favourites including starlings, hedgehogs, some butterflies and ladybirds are in danger of further declines unless more is done to provide better habitats. Giving Nature a Home aims to tackle the crisis facing the UK’s threatened wildlife by asking people to provide a place for wildlife in their own outside spaces. Why not try planting pollen-rich plants to attract bees and butterflies or put up a nestbox for a house sparrow, both great fun family activities but with such positive outcomes for nature.

The Big Wild Sleepout

The Big Wild Sleepout Essex

Thousands of people are expected to camp out over the next week in Essex next week as part of the RSPB’s Big Wild Sleepout, but one local camper in particular going the extra mile.

Liz Hancocks, the RSPB’s Visitor Services Manager for South Essex,  decided one night was not enough and has set herself an amazing challenge. To help do her bit for UK wildlife Liz had pledged to camp across six of the local RSPB nature reserves in aid of nature conservation in Essex. To make this  even more exciting each night she will be receive a camping or wildlife challenge to complete and added to that she has to get between sites by foot, boat or bike, travelling up to thirty miles each day!

Last night was Liz’s first night under canvas for The Big Wild Sleepout. When asked how it was going so far she said ‘Last night was my first night out. I had to make my own fire using only a fire steel and any kindling I could find on site. It certainly wasn’t easy! As I go through the week I’m sure it’s going to get harder, especially after all that cycling’.

All of the money raised will go to help give nature a home. £20 could buy a nestbox for starlings, £30 could pay for a GPS tag to monitor where a seabird flies to find food and £60 could keep water voles “plopping” as they dive into water. Liz is aiming to raise over £2000 for her efforts. To support her please visit her Just Giving page.

We certainly think Liz is rather amazing and wish her the best of luck for the next five nights!

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