CHILDREN & YOUTH
“An Ojibway medicine man passed on his people's teaching that all children are born with four gifts. They might be good runners or good hockey players. They might be good listeners who could take burdens from other people. Maybe they could make children feel comfortable and safe. It didn't matter. Everyone was to be respected for their gifts, and everyone had a duty to help children find and develop their special gifts, whatever they were. All the gifts were sacred."
Increasingly through the years, we have seen a change in the relationship between children and the outdoors. Proliferation of digital devices, poor urban planning leading to lack of open spaces in cities, increased fear brought about by sensational stories in the media, devaluing of independent play, lack of outdoor education in schools, have all contributed to creating this culture where children feel disconnected to the natural world, and have difficulty in expressing themselves.
21% of children play outdoors regularly today, compared to 71% of their parents.
A growing community of scientific studies are now showing that ‘Nature Deficit Disorder’ contributes to obesity, attention difficulties, diminished use of the senses, and higher rates of emotional and physical illness. What this is beginning to show up as, is a weakening of our children’s stewardship of the natural world.
The good news is that connection can be restored.
Studies have shown incredible benefits when we allow our children to reconnect:
Self-confidence, self-acceptance, self-awareness, self-regulation & self-management
Improved cognitive brain function, memory improves
Focus attention, reducing symptoms of ADHD
Heightened creativity, critical thinking & problem solving
Enhanced feelings of capability, self-confidence & trust.
Increased supportive social relationships with peers and community
Forest Therapy for Children
Our workshops include several ‘Community Circles’ where guides will facilitate sharing between students, so each feels understood, and seen by the group. students learn how to actively listen, and consolidate their experiences in a safe yet dynamic space.
By sharing in the community circles, children may begin to understand what gifts they bring to the group, and celebrate the diversity of gifts the others introduce.
Our Programmes encourage the 10 C's
- Cultural repair