Wild Wood Activity Sessions
“I’ve been to a few sessions and they are absolutely brilliant. The whole experience is really relaxing, engaging. It is very well organised and I would highly recommend” Natalie Morrison
We’re providing families with SEN children somewhere they can just relax and enjoy some quality time on their own, as a unit, or with other families engaging in a range of woodland based activities.
Spending time in a stress reducing nature environment helps reinforce positive emotions and contributes to positive family bonding.
Our next activity session is running on Sunday 21st July – you can find out more by following this link
Feedback from parents/carers has not only been lovely from the parents who attended.
“We had a great time and totally forgot about daily struggles and worries and it was very beneficial for all of us”.
“It was hugely relaxing in a no stress environment, allowing us to enjoy family time without any judgement”
Next session - Sunday 10th November
The last session got booked up very quickly, so express interest asap so not to miss out
The wellbeing benefits of nature
By the end of the session even children who had demonstrated a tendency to shy away from interactions with others at the beginning were engaged in some kind of social interactions, either talking to an adult outside their family unit, or being actively involved in a a game with others, or involved in the huddle of people cooking damper bread over the camp fire.
“..it was fascinating to see him interact with other children and very helpful indeed to be able to stand back and gain insight into his behaviours”
Nature Nutures wellbeing
There’s plenty of scientific evidence about the wellbeing benefits to be enjoyed through spending time in nature, slowing heart rates and reducing stress.
Spending time in nature soothes the senses and induces a sense of relaxation and wellbeing, without much conscious effort, which can be particularly beneficial for SEN children.
As a Forest School Leader I like sessions to be fluid with the children choosing what they will be involved with and for how long. My role is to observe and respond to needs, of both children and adults attending a session in the woodland.
What I observed delivered proof that all the children became more focussed and more relaxed as the session progressed.
Outdoor Tribe staff
The sessions are led by myself, Susan Collini, as a qualified Forest School Leader, Social Forester and Mindfulness In The Woods practitioner.
Volunteers are drawn from our Social Forestry group and also friends and neighbours from the local village of Sudborough.
Volunteers are DBS checked, once they have decided they want to commit to helping at sessions, but operate alongside a DBS checked volunteer to begin with.
Some of our volunteers are active members of local U3A groups who bring valuable life skills with them, with several serving on the Outdoor Tribe Board of Directors.
Boosting confidence and self-worth
‘Giving back’ is one of the wellbeing outcomes we promote at our Social Forestry sessions, alongside ‘getting active’, ‘being social’, ‘caring for the environment’, and ‘noticing things’. It’s great to hear feedback from our volunteers that demonstrates they get as much out of the sessions as the families who attend.
A common response from our volunteers, many of whom are retired, is very much related to wellbeing outcomes
“Being a volunteer at Outdoor Tribe family sessions has really built my confidence and boosted my feeling of self-worth”.
Such comments are delightful to receive. Promoting intergenerational experiences, encouraging all ages to engage, is part of our commitment to improving wellbeing in the community.