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Logo: National Botanic Garden Wales

National Botanic Garden of Wales

Biodiversity Conservation Assistant

Biodiversity Conservation Assistant

Biophilic Wales at the National Botanic Garden of Wales

Biophilic Wales is a three-year project funded by the Welsh Government under the Enabling Natural Resources and Well-being Grant Scheme (ENRaW). The project will increase the well-being of people, biodiversity and the environment, throughout Wales, using three interconnected work packages: Inspiring Spaces, Grasslands for Life and Plants for People. This is a partnership between the National Botanic Garden of Wales, Swansea Bay University Health Board, Natural Resources Wales and Swansea University, along with other partners and collaborators throughout Wales.

Inspiring Spaces

Transforming amenity grasslands and under-utilised outdoor areas, into spaces that are full of wildlife, where people can enjoy and be restored by the natural world.

We will deliver community co-developed green infrastructure projects, using 40 sites within the Swansea Bay University Health Board estate as focal points. The sites surround hospitals, health-centres, mental health and residential facilities. We will increase biodiversity value, accessibility, ecosystem services and connectivity. We will create inspirational green spaces for people to connect with nature. The work we do will be used to develop models that can be applied throughout Wales.

Grasslands for Life

Developing resilient grassland ecosystems by revolutionising monitoring and strengthening restoration activities. Connecting people with Wales' most beautiful landscapes.

We will revolutionise how we monitor grasslands, enabling us to manage, restore and create sites that maximise biodiversity and ecosystem resilience. We will use innovative soil DNA barcoding to determine the entire biosphere of grasslands (including plants, animals, fungi and microbes). Our sites will range from amenity grasslands within the Swansea Bay University Health Board estate, colliery spoil sites to conservation grasslands in NNRs throughout Wales. We will develop cost-effective tools and protocols that can be used by land managers and conservation practitioners.

Plants for People

Celebrating Wales' natural heritage by protecting our most threatened plants, for the people of Wales.

We will use a scientific evidence-base, in-situ and ex-situ conservation and public engagement to celebrate and protect Wales' most endangered plants. We will ensure that Wales' most threatened plants and key grassland species are protected for the future by collecting seed for the National Seed Bank of Wales. We will develop approaches to ensure that Welsh provenance seed of grassland species are available for restoration and creation projects. Community and volunteer groups, within the Health Board and beyond, will help to grow Wales' threatened plants to create a distributed network for plant conservation.

The Role: Biodiversity Conservation Assistant

This is an exciting and wide-ranging post providing botanical and biodiversity support to the Biophilic Wales project, delivering across all of the work packages. Within the Inspiring Spaces work package you will support the Green Infrastructure Officer and Swansea Bay University Health Board Estates Team to carry out biodiversity improvements across the Health Board Estate. In the Grasslands for Life work package you will assist the National Botanic Garden of Wales' Science Officer by supporting lab work in the Botanic Garden's Molecular Labs. Within the Plants for People work package you will help to process seed of some of Wales' most threatened plants. As part of the Biophilic Wales team the post holder will also help with public engagement activities and work with volunteers on project delivery. Full training will be provided in any aspects of project delivery that the successful candidate is not familiar with. This is an excellent opportunity to learn and apply skills from botany, horticulture, environmental management and scientific research.

This is a full-time, fixed term, position starting as soon as possible and finishing 31st March 2022. Hours of work are 37.5 per week, working five days out of seven, with some weekend work required. The post is based at the National Botanic Garden of Wales with regular site visits throughout Wales to support project delivery. The salary is up to u00a318,700 per annum according to qualifications and experience. Informal enquiries are welcome and should be directed to Biophilic Wales Project Manager: Kathryn Thomas, Kathryn.thomas@gardenofwales.org.uk.

Applications, in the form of a cover letter and CV clearly showing how you meet the criteria, together with full contact details of two referees, should be emailed to Kathryn.thomas@gardenofwales.org.uk by noon on 22 October 2021. We reserve the right to close this vacancy early if a suitable candidate is found.

Job Description

Post title- Biodiversity Conservation Assistant
Department- Science Department, National Botanic Garden of Wales
Reports to- Project Manager, Biophilic Wales
Responsible for helping to manage- Volunteers

Outline purpose of role

You will work across all of the work packages of the Biophilic Wales project providing botanical and biodiversity support. Within the Inspiring Spaces work package you will support the Green Infrastructure Officer and Swansea Bay University Health Board (SBUHB) Estates Team to carry out biodiversity improvements across the Health Board Estate. In the Grasslands for Life work package you will assist the National Botanic Garden of Wales' Science Officer in processing samples from grasslands throughout Wales for DNA metabarcoding in the Botanic Garden's Molecular Labs. Within the Plants for People work package you will help to process seed of some of Wales' most threatened plants for long-term storage within the National Seed Bank of Wales. Working with volunteers you will grow threatened plants within SBUHB sites in order to support long-term conservation. As part of the Biophilic Wales team the post holder will also help with public engagement activities and work with volunteers on project delivery.

Responsibilities

  1. Provide horticultural and research support across all aspects of the Biophilic Wales project.
  2. Work with the Green Infrastructure Officer and SBUHB Estates Team to deliver biodiversity improvements across the Health Board's Estate. You will help to organise and deliver management plans ranging from planting trees and pollinator planting to setting up nest boxes and wildlife webcams.
  3. Support the National Botanic Garden of Wales' Science Officer in delivering the Grasslands for Life work package. This will be in supporting the ongoing labwork processing the soil samples.
  4. 4. As part of the Plants for People work package, assist the Science Officer in running the National Seed Bank of Wales.
  5. Work with the Botanic Garden's Horticulture Team and SBUHB volunteers to grow threatened plants to ensure their long-term conservation.
  6. Work with volunteer action groups for project delivery; provide support and guidance to volunteers.
  7. Help plan and deliver Biophilic Wales public engagement activities and events.
  8. Contribute, as a member of the Biophilic Wales team and Botanic Garden staff to any activities or duties that support and promote the National Botanic Garden of Wales and project partners and help in its smooth day to day running and overall success.
  9. Such other duties as from time to time will be allocated.
  10. Specified below are the criteria considered necessary to fulfil the role.
  11. This information is made openly available to applicants and will form the basis for the recruitment and selection process.
  12. Only those applicants who meet these criteria adequately will be considered.

Person Specification

Essential Criteria

1 Educated to degree level or equivalent in a relevant discipline (likely to be science, environment or horticulture based).

2 Work experience (may have been paid or voluntary) within the area of biodiversity conservation, environmental management or horticulture.

3 Excellent personal communication skills, able to articulate ideas clearly.

4 Excellent numeracy and IT capability. Able to enter and manipulate data, with a very high attention to detail. Experience of using Excel for data processing.

5 Experience of working as part of a team to deliver joint project goals.

6 Genuine passion for the mission and purpose of the Biophilic Wales project and the National Botanic Garden of Wales and enthusiasm for contributing to its success, team spirit, reputation, and ethos.

7 Full UK driver's license.

Desirable Criteria

8 Fluency in written and spoken Welsh, as well as commitment to the people, language, and culture of Wales.

9 Experience of working with volunteers.

To read about this vacancy in Welsh, please click here 

Logo: Biophilic Wales

Closing Date: 22/10/2021  Location: National Botanic Garden of Wales

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