Papillon Project and the Yes Award

The Papillon Project is an educational charity that promotes sustainable living and environmental awareness for young people. Working with secondary schools and sixth-form colleges in Norfolk to inspire young people to grow their own food for themselves and their local community. We are dedicated to our mission to help rehearse the next generation to know how to grow their own food so we can all start to live in a world that is greener and far more sustainable.

The Papillon Project at Diss High School.  Students felt inspired to help save the world from the effects of Climate Change and have formed the ‘Climate Committee’. They formed a committee and organised a week of whole school events, the aim was to raise awareness and funds to build a calming study garden of their own, to promote mental health and encourage nature into the school site. Following this we approached Matt Willer the founder of the Papillon project, with his help, support, and guidance it has enabled our students to bring their goals to fruition, to develop a study garden and build and run a sustainable allotment garden on the school site. The project commitment continues within the school, our students continue to inspire younger pupils, which will ensure the longevity of this student run project.  The committee work together to organise the running of the gardens and the donation of the produce.  They lead a large team of eager volunteers from across the whole school and also volunteers from the wider community.

Our school allotment has become a ‘permanent place of inspirational learning’ , providing team work and leadership opportunities for our students. ‘The allotment provides the most incredible opportunities for crucial and highly valuable life skills to be taught and imparted to young people’.  ‘Improving mental health:  Having a school allotment really is the perfect place for young people to enjoy some temporary escapism from school books and exam pressures. It's certainly been proven that being outside, gardening and working with nature is extremely good for our mental wellbeing. We believe the happier young people are, the better learners they become’. Matt Willer.


Youth Environmental Steward award (YES award)

The main objectives of the YES programme include:

  • Growing and developing leaders with an understanding of the environment;
  • Enabling children to work productively and positively in teams as well as on their own;
  • Developing and enhancing communication skills;
  • Enabling children to make informed choices for their future careers;
  • Increasing environmental awareness; and
  • Enabling us to identify potential tertiary scholarship and internship candidates.

In the end, the YES programme envisages taking children to the next level, preparing them as leaders and for careers in environmental conservation, ecotourism, hospitality and other exciting careers.

‘The Diss Climate Committee group have paired with the Papillon project to create an allotment space within the school. This past week, three students were awarded the YES Award (Young Environment Stewardship Award). Each young person completed over an hour a week's work to help us achieve our final result- an amazing garden space for the whole school to enjoy. 

The Papillon project are an organisation founded by Matt Willer, who work with many schools across Norfolk to build allotments. Working in association with the Climate Committee group at Diss has been extremely successful and we are so thankful for the help of many students and teachers. ‘

- Mae, Erin and Amy 

Representatives of the Climate Committee

Please click on the photos below to see Matthew Hall, Terence Robinson and Adam Keeley receiving his YES award from Matt Willer the founder of the Papillon project.