Investment projects with scope: Dundee Climate Fund

Total budget £375,000


Duntrune Community Garden- SAMH Growing Chrysalis project

2022-11-16  •  •  Dundee Climate Fund

Growing Chrysalis, run by Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH) in Dawson Park, are transforming a disused bowling green into a multipurpose community space, directed by local need.

This project will bring people together, encouraging people to form new and stronger connections building community capacity and resilience. The space will create opportunities for the whole community to develop and share skills, to volunteer and to influence and improve this amazing greenspace. In addition SAMH will also deliver targeted sessions with schools, nurseries, colleges, families, intergenerational and disability groups. 

We have already started transforming this unused, chemically treated, barren grass space into a wildlife and human friendly haven. We have set up several no-dig beds, mulched borders with woodchip and created a native wildlife corner, wildflower border and fruit beds, however there is a significant area of lawn that needs further investment.

Our climate change priorities include: -

  • Improving biodiversity by taking wildlife friendly approaches e.g., animal habitats, welcoming insects, rewilding, no chemicals.
  • Using climate resilient growing approaches e.g., perennial vegetables, drought tolerant plants, saving seeds, rainwater collection/irrigation, organic methods.
  • Encouraging recycling, reusing, repurposing and using natural materials wherever possible e.g., seed and plant swaps, plant pot swap, upcycling, buying second hand, sourcing local materials.
  • Supporting visitors and volunteers who face increased climate anxiety, with our experience of delivering mental health support.

We need funding that can push our project forwards and enable investment into the space as a shared community resource for years to come:

  • Polytunnel/food forest/raised beds/tools - So that local residents of Douglas, West Ferry and the wider Dundee community, whatever their income, have access to affordable organic food on their doorstep. This will reduce their climate impact while providing opportunities to learn skills in climate friendly food growing.
  • Composting area - Composting prevents food waste going to landfill while feeding our soil and teaching others how to do this at home.
  • Rainwater catchment/water irrigation system – We want to collect our autumn and winter rainwater and store it for the drier Spring and Summer months, reducing reliance on tap water. This includes a self-watering polytunnel using irrigation from rainwater tanks.
  • Outdoor kitchen/shelter – having opportunities to gather and share food will encourage people to socialise and discuss individual or collective ways to prevent climate change. With a welcoming atmosphere, sharing a table, preparing food together and eating with fresh ingredients we can demonstrate healthy climate-friendly habits that are accessible.



Victoria Gardens – YYI

2022-11-25  •  •  Dundee Climate Fund

  1. Victoria Gardens is a 2600 square metre urban growing and social space on Blackness Road. Victoria Gardens has been awarded the Silver Gilt Certificate and the Its Your Neighbourhood Level 5 Certificate in 2022. Annually the garden supports over 500 visitors/participants ranging from school groups, community organisations, volunteers and students. The Victoria Gardens runs an annual summer club supporting young people over the six weeks over the holidays. Over and above this we run foreign language classes, yoga, arts & crafts groups, weekly garden club, a community fridge and social events. Victoria Gardens has a wild culinary area with common ‘weeds’ that can be used in cooking. The garden also has a compost area to produce its own nutrient rich soil. The garden also produces jams, chutney and teas using organic ingredients from the garden.


Our ambitions are to create a sustainable space with an aim for net zero. We will achieve this by installing solar panels and batteries to reduce our energy ouput of 2000kwh per annum, install a water reservoir system collecting rainwater to be used for agriculture, a large polytunnel to increase production of fruits and vegetables from warmer climates. Thus reducing carbon miles through international food transport. The garden would grow local fruit and vegetables over a longer growing period including the winter. Lastly we aim to grow our community fridge by employing a dedicated staff member, he/she will liase with supermarkets, food providers, the Dundee Food Insecurity network and others to ensure a constant supply. This food will then be distributed to local partner organisations, foodbank, support cafes and individuals. This will reduce food waste in the City.


YYI is applying to purchase a large polytunnel, solar panels, water butt system and staff costs for running the community fridge

Youth Climate Strike 2019

The psychology of climate change: Pathways to youth and community action

2022-11-20  •  •  Dundee Climate Fund

Globally, young people rate climate change as the most important societal issue (Ojala, 2018), and 77% think the future is frightening, 66% are very or extremely worried, and 45% reporting that their feelings about climate change affects their daily life (Marks et al., 2021). A concept that attempts to capture the psychological impact of climate change is ‘eco-anxiety’, which has diffused into public discourse (see BBC, 2019). Eco-anxiety contains common features of anxiety, such as uncertainty and lack of control (Pihkala, 2020; Stanley et al., 2021) and is conceptualized as a manifestation of the impact of climate change on wellbeing. In a study of adult students, Schwartz et al., (2022) found that engagement in collective action decreased the symptoms of depression related to climate change anxiety. However, Schwartz and colleagues (2022) did not address what it is about collective action that functions as a buffer for climate change anxiety.

We propose a project that would examine ways to engage communities and especially young people around climate change. We believe that this type of engagement will not only raise awareness but also improve resilience and well-being as it relates to the effects of climate change. One important aspect of engaging communities to mitigate climate change is that acting together – and seeing others act – can really affect wellbeing, thus encouraging continued action. Acting together can reduce climate anxiety and create a sense of empowerment, a feeling that in working together, people really can create change. 

We will use a qualitative approach to understand what factors harm or improve people’s psychological wellbeing in the context of climate change, focusing on the roles of identity, intersectionality, collective action, and direct and vicarious (dis)empowerment. Speaking with students and activists, we propose to conduct focus groups with non-activists to explore how their understandings of climate change relate to their wellbeing and empowerment. We will also conduct individual interviews with climate activists to ask people what it is that gets them motivated to make changes in their own lives and also in trying to get others motivated as well. Speaking with both non-activists and activists will provide contrasting perspectives on shared community, identity, and wellbeing. We will partner with local organisations to share this information and find ways to encourage young people in local communities to take part in climate action.

Outputs for this work will come in two forms: community-focused output and academic output. In terms of community-focused output, the project’s primary aim is to provide local stakeholders and local young people the opportunity to discuss their experience of participating (or not) in collective action for climate change. This work will ideally find out ways to better connect these groups, first through a workshop for local organisations, and then through an event that would allow young people in Dundee to connect with those organisations. It could also be beneficial to bring this information to the local council and other local government bodies, and we would do this by preparing a lay report that can be shared publicly. The academic output would involve carrying what we learn in the interviews and focus groups to conferences and academic publications so that further research can be carried out in the future.  

£1612 - total salary for a project assistant to help organise and coordinate interviews, focus groups, and workshops with local stakeholders. Cost calculated for 7.5 hours per month for 12 months, starting 1 June 2023.

£980 - travel and accommodation for project consultation from Dr Sara Vestergren. Dr Vestergren will participate in workshops with local stakeholders.

£1032 - Transcription (group interviews - 5x120min)

£1800 - Transcription (individual interviews - 20x60min)

£600 - Participant incentives (40x15)

Total: £6024

DUNDEE BAIRNS - Free meals and clothes to Dundee's bairns

DUNDEE BAIRNS - Electric van to deliver free meals and clothes to Dundee bairns

2022-11-17  •  •  Dundee Climate Fund


Dundee Bairns was formed as a community project in 2016 and was formally constituted as a charity in May 2017. We provide free breakfasts and lunches during the school holidays and free hot 2-course evening meals through our Tea Club during the winter months. Throughout the year we also deliver Christmas food hampers and vouchers, gifts for children, Easter eggs, cooking packs for families and schools and children's activity packs. Over the last 6 years we have provided over 450,000 meals to children in Dundee. In addition, through our Cosy Bairns project we have provided new clothes and footwear to just under 6000 children during the winters of 2020,2021 and 2022. All the aforementioned services rely on our staff and volunteers using their own cars. During the summer holidays we have had to rent vans due to the extremely high volume of meals we provide on certain days, but for almost all our services we currently rely on our volunteers and staff using their own vehicles. 

In 2017 when we started the Tea Club meals, we provided them to 5 Primary Schools, and now in the period October 2022 to March 2023, we will be providing over 1,000 hot meals per week, spread over 18 locations. 

The grant we are seeking from the Dundee Climate Fund would be used to purchase an electric van. This will reduce the requirement for our staff and volunteers to use their own vehicles and reduce the carbon footprint of the charity.  

An electric van is ideal for Dundee Bairns as our daily mileage will be no more than 100 miles per day, and therefore a single charge will suffice each day. It is likely that the annual mileage could be as high as 25,000 miles per year, and we believe that we would be best served by purchasing an electric van.  The quotes we have received to date equate to a cost of £24,000.

 If we are succesful with our application there are 3 main benefits. Firstly, having our own electric vehicle will allow the charity to provide our meals, children's clothing/footwear and other items for schools and children in a more cost effective manner. Secondly, it will reduce the demands made on our staff and volunteers to use their own vehicles and finally it will significantly reduce our carbon footprint. A truly win,win,win situation. 


Strathmartine Community Larder SCIO

Strathmartine Community Larder SCIO- Affordable Energy Efficiency & Food Growing

2022-11-25  •  •  Dundee Climate Fund

Strathmartine Community larder Will use the funding to purchase energy saving household equipment which will be sold on to local residents at a subsidised cost.   This will allow people living on lower incomes to purchase items that they would not normally be able to such as slow cookers, light bulbs, dryer balls, air fryer, halogen ovens, draught excluders etc. we also aim to provide a scheme where items can be paid in instalments prior to receiving goods. Energy-efficient appliances are essential to help residents to save money and energy, protect the environment, and generally enhance their lifestyle. Thus, the more energy efficient home appliances they have access to then the lower their utility bills will be while protecting the environment from harmful gases such as carbon dioxide.

As well as the above SCL will work in partnership with several community growing spaces groups to purchase materials for growing kits to be distributed throughout the area to promote and encourage home growing as a means of reducing food costs to families affected by poverty. The growing spaces volunteers will offer support and instruction as to how to use these kits and how to maintain future home growing.

Resilience local food growing the volunteers from Baldragon Community Garden and Ardler Environmental Group propose to distribute potato growing kits throughout the community of Strathmartine. This community initiative will encourage families, individuals etc to try out growing food and reap the rewards. It’s ideal for those who don’t have a garden. The environmental benefits include less greenhouse emissions, reduced carbon footprint and reduce food waste. Importantly it will foster a connection with nature. Whilst this initiative will play a role in helping with climate change, at the same time, it will show that growing own food can lead to financial savings, and improve mental and health being. It’s hoped that this small initiative will get folk of all ages enjoying the outdoors and learning new skills and knowledge to then pass on to others. 

We have discussed the above proposal with the trustees, volunteers and current SCL users and they are all in agreement that the energy efficient appliances would be of benefit to local people who are struggling with the increased energy costs and increased cost of living.  It was the SCL trustees that put forward the idea of not simply handing out the appliances free of charge but to create a system where the items can be purchased at a lower cost therefore providing some future stability for the appliance project with an aim to continue the service long term. The Ardler Environmental Group and the Baldragon Community Garden volunteers where consulted regarding the growing kits and see this as an excellent opportunity to link in with the community of Strathmartine and to get folk involved in existing and new community garden that are available in Strathmartine area with a view to long term involvement. Both of the above projects can be linked into the long term work of the SCL who will offer courses and groups such as cooking on a budget, one pot cooking, batch cooking etc teaching people how to best use their new equipment and indeed the food they will grow.

The project will focus on the Strathmartine area of Dundee which includes St Marys, Kirkton, Ardler and environs.  We will work with various food projects and green space / community garden projects for example Strathmartine Community Larder, Ardler Village Trust Community Fridge, Chalmers Ardler Church Larder, 3 community centre LMGs, St Marys growing space, Friends of Clatto, Ardler Community Garden, School family development workers.

Community Food Hub & Freecycle

A Thriving Community, a Thriving Planet

2022-11-24  •  •  Dundee Climate Fund

The Community Food Hub & Freecyle group have always believed that local people are the key to reducing carbon emissions and helping to protect the environment. Through the Larder, food waste from major supermarkets is reduced and the Freecycle service has saved tonnes of clothes, toys and household items from inceneration and reduced the need for people to buy new items in the shops. The Freecycle part of our service has gone from a few items on a table to a community resource where people donate as well as take, toys come back after a few months when children get bored with them, clothes come back once they are outgrown, books once they have been read.. For Food Hub customers, we have issued slow cookers to reduce cooking costs and will be shortly starting a 'slow cooker challenge' with customers to cook a slow cooker meal and share the results on our Community WhatsApp page and encourage others to give it a try.

We feel it is now time to take our care for the environment a step further whilst also benefitting local people - a WIN WIN situation. We would like to puchase heated clothes airers as they use considerably less electrcity than a tumble dryer and  hanging wet clothing on radiators as this makes boilers work harder therefore costing more money and creating more emissions. Air Fryers will also help people to reduce energy usage, as will LED light bulbs and draught excluder kits.and reflective radiator panels.

We believe that when a community is struggling with the cost of living crisis , it's patronising to preach about reducing carbon emissions but providing these items will enable people to reduce household energy bills in addition to reducing damage to the environment. This will  therefore help  to create a thriving community that will actively seek out other ways to reduce costs and energy dependancy. This is a project for the long term and aims to go further in, and for, the future.

Happy lettuce head in the Maxwell garden

Maxwell Grows Dundee

2022-11-19  •  •  Dundee Climate Fund


The community-led Maxwell Centre and Garden has been at the heart of the Coldside area for over 20 years. We have an outstanding reputation nationally for delivering a holistic project for wellbeing through support services, youth work and our community garden and outreach. 

We are determined to make our communities stronger, more resilient and adaptable to change but also build the capacity to change our local environment for the better, have important conversations about climate and social change and demonstrate how this can be achieved at the neighbourhood level across Dundee.



We will make food growing more accessible to everyone in Dundee to learn and experience environmental action first hand in people’s own neighbourhood in three ways



  • Over 30 community growing spaces to visit.  Access to 100s of events to attend and volunteering opportunities throughout the year. 
  • Community Gardens will increase their capacity and visibility through the Dundee Food Growing / Community Garden Network, training and support. 
  • Volunteers will gain from better physical and mental health and local biodiversity will be improved. 
  • Neighbours will benefit from gaining new skills and friendships and access free local produce, increasingly important with the cost of living crisis and given that £1 out of every £10 we spend is on food and that 30% of greenhouse emissions in the UK are from food production.



We aim to save people money and reduce waste and carbon emissions through these activities and increase the food growing spaces and their productivity across our city.

  • Borrow tools and books to get growing your own food
  • Free access to one-to-one advice,
  • Free seeds, seedlings, cuttings and plants and
  • 40+ free weekly workshops.



  • Each month we will focus on different climate-related topics to enable and support our community to reflect, learn and take action for a greener and fairer Dundee
  • We’ll celebrate food, nature and community through free gigs in the garden, films, food, games, conversations for change, etc. 



We are committed to sustaining this project beyond this funding opportunity.

There is a strong momentum amongst community growing spaces, with our new Dundee Food Growing / Community Gardens Network and Grow Dundee group that will keep engaging people in Dundee.

This project is a unique opportunity to deliver and promote, through experience and example at community gardens, many of the objectives laid out in Dundee’s Climate Action Plan and the 20-minute Neighbourhood concept for sustainability. 


Fit For The Future

2022-11-14  •  •  Dundee Climate Fund

Significant energy efficiency measures in Dundee community space. Improving the efficiency of an 1888 building through insulation (both attic and underfloor), secondary glazing upgrading, installation of destratification fans (to better direct the heat towards the colder floor level from a 7m height) , solar PV panels and heat distribution measures to reduce carbon emissions by 34% and reduce heating output by 25-30%. The benefits of each have been detailed in an audit for the building. Our peak usage is also in the evening, when most of our classes take place. Battery power will allow us to generate and store during quieter daytime sessions to then allow for storage and use in the evening. Insulation will have a direct effect on the cold pool we have in the centre of our main practice space. Radiator heat goes straight up into our 7m vaulted space. With both insulation and 6 destratification fans, we could move an even heat to the lower levels as seen in the Dundee Rep. With soaring energy costs, we would be better able to direct resources towards maintaining our rich family and outreach programme providing a warm, welcoming and comfortable space.

With soaring energy costs, and reduced household income, and the organisation's core funds coming from community classes, we cannot put up class prices without increasing the pressure on our clients. With outreach classes 6 days a week, our free programmes also feel the effects of comfort and well-being in our space. Sharing our message about energy would also be a large part of our comms for the duration and after the project, as the most significant project we have taken on since our inception.

The Campy Growers' Saturday veg stall

Campy Growers Food for the Future

2022-11-18  •  •  Dundee Climate Fund

Watch our VIDEO to learn more about the project here

Campy Growers are transforming a derelict space into Dundee's biggest community food garden: the Vegetarium, with the potential to produce tonnes of fresh, local food to benefit the whole city.

As food costs increase, we need to build resilience, security and the skills to grow our own food, in response to the worsening climate crirsis.

We are both mitigating emissions, as well as adapting to future food shortages and at the same time boosting biodiversity.

So, over the next year, we will:

  • Expand our growing space for food production.
  • Provide fresh produce to community projects.
  • Deliver workshops to teach people across the local area how to grown food.
  • Deliver cooking skills classes, lunch clubs and other food and health-based activities.
  • Inspire, excite and welcome families to connect with vibrant, fresh, local food.
  • Produce vegetable seedlings to support Dundee residents and other community gardens to grow veg.
  • Grow high-quality, nutrient-dense food using sustainable agro-ecological methods.
  • Minimise carbon emissions and maximise carbon absorption through shortening supply chains, composting onsite waste and building soil carbon.
  • Enhance biodiversity, soil restoration and carbon drawdown.
  • Guide individuals throught their horticulture journey by upskilling and training  them.
  • Regenerate the soil, which has been neglected and compacted ovber the years, with the use of green manure and manual tools.
  • Help connect poeoplpe with their local food grower. Increase knowledge of and participation in environmentally sustainable land activities buy providing opportunities for peopole to be involved with the site, such as Community Supported Agriculture membershio, volunteer days, pick-your-own, open days and stalls.

As a volunteer-led organisation, over 2 growing seasons, having rejuvenated the soil, we have produced approx 3 tonnes of vegetables that have been donated across the city to individiuals, families and charities.

We are looking to employ a full-time gardener and opart-time Project Coordinator to develop this work and allow us to reach our full potential for the benefit of the whole city.

We are also seeking funds for the propagation of our vegetable seedlings and the upcycling of two abandoned shipping containers into usable storage.

Our success supports the success of other food projects across the city.


Growing to eat: Eating to grow. A whole community approach to improving health.

2022-11-18  •  •  Dundee Climate Fund

We partner with others at home & abroad, supporting people to have more control over their lives. While much of our work over the past three decades has focused on overseas programmes, since 2006 we have grown our Scottish activities to include sustainable education workshops and more recently a food security & food waste programme from our base at The Roundhouse, a former social work building in Whitfield, Dundee.

Our vision is for the Roundhouse to be a hub for sustainable learning and living here in Dundee - a place to provide people with the knowledge and skills needed to navigate changing, uncertain times and the confidence and resources to meet the challenges they face.

The Roundhouse café & Community Kitchen addresses hunger while reducing food waste through education & repurposing of surplus foods. Last year we captured over 8 tonnes of surplus food from 17 local supermarkets, businesses, & farms, using much of it to produce and distribute through local foodbanks more than 10,000 meals using 1,750 volunteer hours.

We want to shift the focus away from simple provision towards education & self-sufficiency through transformed behaviours & improved skillsets around ideas of food & sustainability. Our café (which supports a pay-it-forward scheme & gives away surplus food ensuring everyone can eat) is becoming a gathering place for locals & community groups, addressing social isolation, food waste, and hunger simultaneously. Our garden and allotments are tended by a volunteer community gardening group, producing fresh produce for use in the Roundhouse Community Kitchen café and meals.

Informed by community feedback and experience we are seeking to expand our work growing food locally and inspiring others to do similarly. This project has the aim of improving the health and wellbeing of Whitfield residents by empowering them to make informed, healthy choices. Employing a part-time member of staff and supported by volunteers we will run a series of workshops tailored to different groups within the community, supporting people to have the skills, confidence, and means to grow their own food - however much or little! - and cook using fresh and budget food items.