Lush Spring Prize

The Lush Spring Prize comprises of a £200,000 prize fund and other support activities, to build capacity for those repairing the earth’s damaged systems. It is for organisations that are working to revive damaged social and natural environments, and who want to share what they are doing to inspire and inform others.

There are 11 prizes awarded across four categories:

  • Intentional - For great new ideas and projects up to 1 year old, to help establish a strong foundation from which to grow.

  • Young - For projects and organisations of 1-5 years old that have a proven track record and which are seeking more funding to expand or develop.

  • Established- For groups or organisations that demonstrate successful and inspirational work over more than 5 years. We hope for prize money to spread the word of their work to inspire more people to get involved with the regenerative movement.

  • Influence- For those campaigning or lobbying to influence policy, regulation or public opinion in support of regeneration. This prize is aimed at supporting those who are changing the context in which we are all working.

The Spring Prize receives hundreds of nominations and the winners are chosen from a shortlist by a diverse panel of judges from around the world, each with their own expertise and experience. 

2019 Spring Prize shortlist announced

50 projects from around the world have been shortlisted for the £200,000 Lush Spring Prize for environmental and social regeneration.

The 2019 Prize received over 250 applications, which were shortlisted to a group of 50 in January this year. Applications were received from across six continents and 68 different countries.

Although the shortlist is extremely diverse, interesting common themes can be identified. For example, many projects were taking ownership of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, using regenerative practices as a means of achieving them in a way that remains relevant to the local context. Climate Change was a common issue being addressed -  not just in terms of preventing it but adapting to and mitigating the effects that are already being felt by projects and their stakeholders.

Projects were driven by a range of stakeholders, including grassroots campaigners, small scale agro-ecological producers, regenerative businesses, indigenous groups, academics, global solidarity networks and think tanks. Their work addresses multiple issues needed to support life, including ecosystem restoration, regenerative food production, building community, creating resilient housing and circular economies, whilst also supporting displaced people, protecting indigenous rights and access to land.

The 2019 Prizes

There are four different prize categories, each with a number of awards. These are Intentional, Young, Established and Influence.

15 ‘Intentional’ projects have been shortlisted. These include Laboratorio Sicilia 2030, which aims to actively support individuals and organizations in Sicily to regenerate and grow sustainably following the UN 2030 Agenda. In this crucial time of climate, environmental, social and economic crises, they see Sicily struggling to find an encompassing vision, to break free from widespread inertia and resignation, and align itself with its values. They are choosing to unite many often uncoordinated local initiatives in Sicily under the inclusive and organizing purpose of the Sustainable Development Goals.

15 projects have been shortlisted in the ‘Young’ prize category. Alianza Ceibo is one of these and is comprised of members from four indigenous nations in the western Amazon that are – together - building a holistic movement to prevent the destruction of their cultures and rainforest territories. The Alliance was created in 2014 in response to oil fields polluting local water sources. In the process of building rainwater catchment systems (to increase access to clean water), they learned of common threats facing them all and decided to collaborate.

Image: Alianza Ceibo
Alianza Ceibo has been shortlisted in thr 'Young Prize category. Alianza Ceibo’s teams from the A'i Kofan, Siona, Siekopai, and Waorani indigenous nations.

Ten ‘Established’ projects have been shortlisted, including INUA (Instituto Nova União da Arte). INUA is a grassroots project based in the East Zone Favela of Sau Paulo, Brazil. Its mission is to promote community development through art, culture, environmental education and generation of paid work. INUA draws on the resources of the favela itself to fuel regeneration. This challenges the view that the favelas depend on outside help to develop. Instead, it demonstrates that they can act as a needed source of nutrients for regenerating what is unhealthy about the entire city.

Ten projects have been shortlisted for an Influence Award. These include Karambi Group of People with Disabilities that was founded in 1995 in Uganda by a group of people with disabilities (PWDs) in response to the discrimination, isolation, and exclusion faced by PWDs within society.  They have established a food forest, permaculture gardens and an irrigation system that is enabling them to produce organic foods in all seasons throughout the year. They also operate skill training and demonstration centres and have scaled down permaculture to primary schools so that young people can learn how to work with nature while producing the needed nutritious foods.

2019’s awards ceremony

2019’s Spring Prize winners will be announced during an awards ceremony in mid May, having been decided by a panel of 12 judges in February. The Spring Prize judging panel is comprised of prominent people in the regenerative movement as well as one Lush staff judge and one Lush customer judge.

Regeneration

People all over the world are developing ways to live in harmony with nature and each other. They are resisting further damage, restoring ecosystems, generating renewable resources, nurturing solidarity and building health, wholeness and resilience.

Regeneration can mean a lot of different things to different people. By regeneration we mean systems and practices that take a ‘holistic’ approach to solving environmental, social and economic problems; aiming to restore health, wholeness and resilience.

We are looking for projects that are actively contributing to the health of all the systems they are part of.

As well as helping to restore the natural systems in the place the project is based, projects should be nurturing the wellbeing of all their workers, the capacity of the community around them, and the networks they are connected to.

We are seeking projects that are aware of the challenges they face, and building the capacity of their own organisation to improve and evolve.

Finally, projects should be sharing their experience so that others can be inspired by their work, adapt the knowledge to their own situations and develop the regenerative movement.