Thanks to the Big Lottery Fund, Stepping into Nature, led by Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) team has grants available from £100 up to £2000.

Cllr Daryl Turner, the county council’s Cabinet member for natural and built environment, said:


“We want to encourage local community groups to come forward with ideas that help older people get outdoors in the natural environment.

“Being outdoors and sharing it with someone even for a short time is a crucial part of living well.

“Many people today have become detached from the natural world for various reasons such as mobility, lack of confidence or transport. The grants offer a great opportunity to fund projects which helps reconnect older people with nature and enjoy the benefits it brings to health and wellbeing.”

Julie Hammon, Project Officer for AONB, said: “We would really like to see new projects which make the natural environment accessible for all, create opportunities to learn new skills and reduce feelings of social isolation and loneliness in local communities.

“We are particularly keen to hear from people in Dorchester, Bridport, Beaminster, Swanage, Lyme Regis, Chickerell or the immediate surrounding areas who are looking at creating dementia friendly greenspaces or activities”

For more information on the project, grant criteria and application form visit  You can also email, or call Julie Hammon for an informal chat about your project on 01305 224785.

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