Climate Action Seacroft volunteer Jess Thomas has been recruited into her dream job at Hollybush Conservation Centre, just weeks after graduating with a First in her degree in Innovation & Skills for Social Change from Leeds Beckett University.
Since February 2022, when she attended the first Seacroft Climate Forum, Jess has been a keen volunteer at Seacroft Forest Garden.
Inspired by the pioneering work of Bedford Fields, Leeds’ first Community Forest Garden, local volunteers in Seacroft set about transforming a previously derelict 0.62 acres of land owned by Leeds City Council’s Housing Department into a haven for local wildlife & residents alike. Over 1400 hours have been spent on the site by local residents so far & produce is already being enjoyed by users of the local food pantry run by LS14 Trust.
As well as being a regular volunteer at the Forest Garden, Jess is on the Climate Action Seacroft Steering Group & acts as Youth Ambassador, working alongside youth workers & local youth projects within LS14 Trust & Chapel FM to bring an environmental focus to activities. A recent success was a Sustainability Day for young people, delivered in partnership with the Youth Service, where activities including ‘wombling’, foraging & producing a guide to common local wild plants.
Jess is looking forward to putting her new knowledge & skills into action in this new role at TCV, where she will be caring for urban, rural and community greenspaces, helping children and adults get involved in nature, and delivering environmental projects with local organisations across Leeds.
As Jess says: ‘The skills, experience and confidence I gained while volunteering with Climate Action Seacroft encouraged me to apply for this amazing opportunity, and has kickstarted my career in the green sector.’