Breakfast presenter Zoe Ball has announced BBC Radio 2’s new initiative to shine a light on the plight of our bee population.
The Big Bee Challenge launches today with a competition for children to design a garden that will attract bees and other pollinating insects, with the winning design being built at an NHS Trust site which is used by children and young people with mental health needs.
Additionally, Big Bee Challenge Weekend is on Saturday 31st July and Sunday 1st August when the station is encouraging everyone to do one thing, large or small, to help the bees – with lots of tips available on-air and the website.
A new podcast will also be available on BBC Sounds in July called Bees In A Pod.
The Royal Horticultural Society is partnering with Radio 2 for the campaign, with their garden experts building the winning design, and through engagement with schools and their info-packed website.
Zoe Ball said: “I’m positively buzzing about the Big Bee Challenge, it’s such an exciting new initiative for Radio 2. Our younger listeners can draw, paint or sketch a picture to show their design for a fabulous garden that will attract bees and insects, and we will build the winning entry.
“How fantastic is that! And anyone can get involved in Big Bee Challenge Weekend by doing something, however small, to help encourage more bees in our outside spaces. Knowing just how important the plight of bees is, I feel so passionate about this campaign – it’s already got me thinking about what I can do for them in my garden!”
🐝 Radio 2’s Big Bee Challenge, in partnership with @the_rhs, aims to encourage us all to help create a better environment for the bees 🐝
Firstly – we're launching a competition for children under 12 to design a garden to keep our bees buzzing!
— BBC Radio 2 (@BBCRadio2) June 7, 2021
Helen Thomas, Head of Radio 2, said: “With Radio 2’s Big Bee Challenge we’d love to get the nation behind the project to make changes, big or small, to do what we can to help our bees to thrive.
“We hope to inspire young minds to think about the world around them by imagining a beautiful space that wildlife will thrive in, whilst looking and smelling gorgeous.
“Please encourage any children you know to send us their most creative designs. And for everyone else there’s the Big Bee Challenge Weekend which should be brilliant fun – whatever your age! Let’s all help to make a difference.”