WWF and RSPB are offering support to community nature projects, with £1 million of funding from Aviva at their disposal.

The Save Our Wild Isles Community Fund is open for applications from groups wanting to restore their local areas.

The fund is launching in response to a YouGov poll which discovered that 71% of people in Scotland are worried about the degradation of nature in the UK.

Kate Norgrove, executive director of advocacy and campaigns at WWF, said: “We know that the devastating nature loss witnessed across the UK is something the public is worried about, but we also know what needs to be done to turn things around.

“Communities, by harnessing the power of working together, are playing an important role in protecting and restoring nature.

“We’re excited to be working with the RSPB and Aviva to further help local groups to take action, and we can’t wait to see the results.”

Research from both RSPB and WWF has found that the UK is one of the most nature-depleted areas in the entire world.

This began in the industrial revolution two centuries ago and hasn’t slowed down since.

The UK has only 53% of its once rich biodiversity left, with litter in parks and forests an ever-increasing problem.

Emma Marsh, RSPB executive director, said: “Community groups and volunteers are already doing incredible work across the UK to protect and restore our wildlife, and we’re constantly amazed and inspired by the stories of how people are making a difference – whether it’s engaging with children to make schools wildlife-friendly, taking part in citizen science projects, carrying migrating toads across busy roads or planting whole orchards.

“Every effort counts. We can’t wait to see how this fund helps create ripples of action throughout the UK. For although nature is in crisis, together we can save it.”

The Save Our Wild Isles Community Fund will give £2 for every £1 raised per project, maxing out at £5000 per project.

This money could fund a number of things, from community gardens and wildlife protection to litter picks and tree planting.

Groups can apply for the funding at https://www.avivacommunityfund.co.uk/save-our-wild-isles