Looking to help save the bees? I’ve rounded up some of the best bee charities working to help save our fuzzy friends.
Bees are critical to the environment and play a pivotal role in our ecosystem. As pollinators, they facilitate the reproduction of countless plant species. This ensures biodiversity levels remain high. Plus they help us to maintain a stable food chain. Yet, due to a multitude of threats – including habitat loss, climate change, pesticide use, disease and more – our bees are under threat.
There are lots of things you can do to help the bees at home. Whether that’s setting up an insect drinking station or helping to revive a tired bee, there are ways to give bees a helping hand. But if you are looking to do more, beyond what you can do in your own garden, then one way is to support a bee charity.
These charities can use the weight of public support to address threats such as habitat loss and pesticide use, more effectively than we could as individuals.
To help you out, I’ve rounded up some of the very best bee charities in the UK to support. Whether you are looking to donate your time, or money, or just want to show your support there are heaps of great options that will leave you buzzing with excitement!
Guide To The Best Bee Charities To Support
Use the quick links below to jump to information about each bee charity, or keep scrolling to read the full post:
- Bumblebee Conservation Trust
- The Bee Friendly Trust
- The Soil Association
- British Beekeepers Association
- Scottish Beekeepers Association
- The Wildlife Trusts
- Bees Abroad
- Bees For Development
Bumblebee Conservation Trust
Established because of serious concerns about the plight of the bumblebee, The Bumblebee Conservation Trust is a charity that works to create a world where bumblebees are thriving and valued. Its mission is to increase the number and distribution of bumblebees.
Its work covers three main areas:
- Practical conservation work, such as creating bee-friendly habitats.
- Science and research activities. This includes organising BeeWalk, a national recording scheme to monitor the abundance of bumblebees across the UK, as well as taking part in academic research projects to advance knowledge on bumblebees.
- Land management advice. Avising land managers on the best ways to support bumblebees on their land is a key element of the work that the charity does.
There are lots of ways to get involved with The Bumblebee Conservation Trust. You can become a member, make a one-off donation, or become a business member. You can even volunteer to take part in bee surveys and get advice on how to make your garden more bee-friendly.
The Bee Friendly Trust
The Bee Friendly Trust is a UK charity that seeks to create habitats for honey bees and all pollinators to thrive. Its thriving network of volunteers works to transform the nation’s neglected spaces into thriving floral habitats for bees.
Established in 2016, when two local beekeepers, installed bee-friendly planters at Putney Rail Station in West London. The charity then literally bloomed from there. Nearby stations loved the idea and wanted planters of their own. Their work caught the attention of Network Rail and Transport for London, who then got involved. Then other beekeepers asked to help, and the organisation grew.
Now the charity has a team of specialists and volunteers who work to make bee-friendly habitats at railway stations across the UK. As well as railways, the team helps communities to make their spaces bee-friendly.
If you want to get involved, there are lots of ways to help. As well as being able to donate money, you can become a station gardener. If you’re not green-fingered, you can still help out by dead-heading, weeding and watering. If you can knit, you can even knit bees, which The Bee Friendly Trust then sell at events and online to help raise funds.
The Soil Association
Whilst The Soil Association might not be the first charity that springs to mind when you think of bees, this organic farming charity is doing a lot of work to help save the bees from the ground up.
Rooted, quite literally, in sustainable food production, The Soil Association recognises the importance of bees when it comes to creating sustainable food systems. As such, it’s helping and encouraging farmers to grow their crops without the pesticides that have been killing bees in huge swathes.
At Woodoaks – a Hertfordshire farm donated to The Soil Association – it’s also planting trees and allowing wild plants to flourish. This provides the food bees need and creates vital habitats for wildlife, all whilst creating a working educational model of what sustainable agriculture can look like.
Its vital work is supported by members and donations. This allows the charity to work with communities, businesses and the government to bring about real environmental change.
British Beekeepers Association
The British Beekeepers Association (BBKA) is a registered charity that works to raise standards in beekeeping, whilst also promoting a greater understanding of the importance of honeybees.
As a champion of bees, the BBKA advise the Government on its Pollinator’s Strategy. Meanwhile, its network of local beekeeping associations supports their communities to improve the environment for honeybees and other pollinators.
The BBKA relies on donations to help support its work. Your donations help to fund the BBKA’s new apiary garden and education centre. This enables schools to visit and learn about the importance of honey bees, pollinators, beekeeping and the environment. Your donations also helps the BBKA support research into the threats facing honey bees – including climate change, pests and diseases, pesticides and more.
Scottish Beekeepers Association
Founded in 1912, The Scottish Beekeepers Association is a national charity supporting beekeepers and honeybees in Scotland. It works to raise awareness of bees and beekeeping and to help conserve honey bees. It also provides education and advice for anyone wanting to take up beekeeping as a hobby in Scotland.
Run entirely by volunteers, the association relies on its members and the general public for all of its support – whether that’s donating your time or donating money.
The Wildlife Trusts
Formed in 1912, The Wildlife Trusts is a grassroots movement of people from across the UK with one common thread – life and a passion for nature. It works to save wildlife and wild places, increase people’s awareness and understanding of the natural world, and deepen people’s relationship with nature.
There are 46 individual Wildlife Trusts across the UK, each of which is an independent charity. Each was formed by groups of people getting together and working with others to make a positive difference to wildlife, in their local communities. Taken together this federation of 47 charities is known as The Wildlife Trusts, which encompasses 900,000 members, 39,000 volunteers, 3,600 staff and 600 trustees.
When it comes to bees, The Wildlife Trusts is working hard to help. Among other action points, it’s teamed up with the UK’s leading environmental groups to form the Bee Coalition. This coalition is working to shine a spotlight on the plight of our pollinators and to inspire and engage policymakers, industry and the public to protect our fuzzy friends.
No, this isn’t a charity that sends bees on holiday. Although what bee wouldn’t like a little holiday after all that hard work that they do?! Instead, Bees Abroad is a charity that works to enable rural communities in the Global South to empower themselves, through sustainable beekeeping.
Together with local beekeeper trainers and organisations it trains and supports communities in local best practices in beekeeping, running a business, and protecting the environment. So far it’s trained over 7000 beekeepers in sustainable beekeeping techniques and the importance of biodiversity and conservation.
Bees For Development
Bees For Development might sound like a political slogan, but it’s actually it’s a global charity, based in Wales, that promotes sustainable beekeeping. In doing so, it helps to combat poverty, build resilient livelihoods and help sustain the natural world.
Sharing natural beekeeping skills with people in the poorest communities of the world helps to give people a reliable, sustainable income for life. Bees For Development uses local skills, local materials and local bees to deliver targeted help where it’s needed most.
By keeping honey bees, it enables people to make a living through harvesting honey and beeswax, while helping to preserve biodiversity. The bees also pollinate food crops and wild plants, helping to increase food security.
Looking for more charities to support? Try my guide to the best sustainability charities and the best ocean conservation charities to support. And if tree planting is more your thing, then try our guide to the best charities that plant trees.