Growing Among Trees is one of five Community Forest & Woodland Outreach consortia delivering the government's Nature Friendly Schools programme, a key part of Defra's 25-Year Environment Plan. It aims to help schoolchildren from communities experiencing disadvantage to benefit from nature through woodland outreach and forest school activities.
Partnering with the Sensory Trust, Nature Nurture, The Garden Classroom and Green Schools Project, Trees for Cities will pilot the programme with ten – six primary, two secondary and two special - schools in Islington and Reading from September 2019 to August 2020, with the potential to expand the project towards the end of next year. Dr William Bird and his team at Intelligent Health will provide consultancy support.
The aim of the project is to create a model for community forest and woodland outreach in urban schools that is sustainable and replicable. Through this 12 month period we hope to learn a huge amount from our partners and that we will be in a strong position to offer urban schools a range of independently evaluated woodland activities to demonstrate effectiveness in strengthening connections with nature, improving mental health and wellbeing among schoolchildren as a result.
More information about the programme will be released soon.