A leading Moray environmental charity founder and director was in Edinburgh this week to receive a Glenfiddich ‘Spirit of Scotland’ award.
Jennie Martin is the founder of ‘Wild Things!’, a Moray-based charity that offers a variety of inspiring wilderness and nature experiences for people of all ages and abilities, regardless of learning challenges or physical and financial difficulties.
The Spirit of Scotland seeks to recognised and reward the contributions of extraordinary people in Scotland, with the winners of the unique scheme determined by public votes.
Wild Things! received the largest number of votes in their environmental category, making Jennie’s accolade possible and her work through the Moray charity nationally recognised.
Jennie, an ethnobotanist by training, has worked with great passion and commitment over the past 12 years to develop the work of Wild things!
After receiving her award Jennie said: “When I was told that I was nominated for this award I was deeply honoured to even be considered alongside such notable Scottish figures.
“I was also delighted that the important work of Wild things! was being recognised in such a way.
“I am touched to have been given this award and by all the people who took the time for vote for Wild things! – as well as the person who initial put us forward to the vote.
“I started Wild things! over 11 years ago with a small grant of £5,000 from the National Lottery. We now employ six people, have over 10 freelancers, 45 volunteers, and have worked with over 12,000 children, teenagers and adults over the years.
“Our connection to the natural world can make us so much more than we think we are able to be. It can stretch the boundaries of what we think is possible, invigorate our hearts bodies and minds, as well as being a fantastic landscape within which to make meaningful friendship.
“This is all aside from the fact that it feeds and clothes us, treats our illness and so much more.
“How can we not care for such a precious commodity? That is what Wild things does – one programme, one activity, one client, one camp fire or conservation project at a time.
“A huge thank you to everyone who took the time to vote – this would not have been possible without you.”
Further information on Wild Things! can be obtained from their website.