UNDERSTANDING OUR NATURE-BASED MENTORING PROGRAMMES
Our Nature-based mentoring and adventure programmes have been designed to bridge a connection between girls and young women to the source of their own wild wisdom, through connection with the Earth and each other.
As parents and guardians to the girls joining the programme, we understand how important it is to know they will be cared for and held safely throughout this process.
The information below is in service to sharing a bit more about how the programme will be run and what to expect.
THE ROLE OF THE MENTOR
I am not the only Mentor in the group
As their guide, I am there to support when support is needed or requested.
They may recognize me as their human guide, but as their mentor, I will also be constantly pointing out how Mother Earth is also mentoring us all the time, as well as each individual in the group.
I will be sharing practices on how to listen and observe what the Earth might be sharing, so even after they walk away from the programme with me, they feel they are constantly being guided.
A large part of my role is also to open their eyes to their own limitless potential and power. I do this by not doing everything for them. Literally!
A strong element of this programme is independence as well as community, so we will be drawing on the collective wisdom of the group, especially when there is an individual who is needing support.
I am familiar with self-doubt (I have been friends with self-doubt for a long time), and because of that, I can see when it is coming up for the girls. There will be plenty of opportunities where we will stretch our boundaries to do things we didn't think we could, make things we didn't think we could make, go places we wouldn't have attempted to go before and to know that we are capable and deserving of feeling powerful!
Each girl and each day will be different, and so the level of support and guidance I will offer to each one depending on the environment will vary.
The most important part? Reflecting back to them
There is always an element of risk in everything that we do. The risks we may encounter during the programme while spending time along River gorges and Forest walks can be more physical in nature.
Part of my role is not to point out every single potential danger there is to the girls, but to create a container that supports them in identifying, and assessing the risk themselves. Pointing out any and all risk to our young ones would be doing them a disservice. Sheltering them from potential danger means we rob them of the opportunity to learn for themselves what feels safe, and right.
By building and strengthening this skill in risk assessment, we allow them to gain experience and confidence in listening to their own bodies and trust their intuition so that this can be applied in any and all environments.
(But of course, I will do everything in my power to make sure they come back with all of their fingers and toes!)
The primary mode of communication with parents and guardians will be through email.
There will be a Whatsapp Group organised for the parents and guardians of the girls, and the purpose of this group will be to send through photos taken of the day, as well as alert to confirmation of pick up/drop off locations or last-minute changes.
Please keep personal inquiries to direct emails to email@example.com
WHAT TO BRING & WEAR
This will vary greatly depending on the weather, season and location we will be heading to. During the warmer months, it will be safe to say that we will stay close to watercourses so we can dip in to cool down. On these days, it will be important to pack swimsuits and associated gear.
The list below is the standard packing list for any programme, with an additional list for water-based programmes
STANDARD PACKING LIST
Light backpack (2 straps)
Water bottle (1litre in cool weather, 1.5litres in summer)
Snacks & packed lunch (Preferably in reusable containers)
Comfortable outdoor clothing
Comfortable walking shoes
Rain poncho (weather dependent)
Rashguard and swim shorts
Drybag (waterproof bag to replace backpack)
Change of clothes
Booties (or any closed-toed water-based shoes)
We will be exploring different environments and settings based on the planned skills we will share, and the weather conditions on the day.
All trails will be located on Hong Kong Island.
Please note that the drop off location may be different from the pick-up location.
Our programme will continue even in the rain! If weather forecasts unsafe weather to continue, we will postpone the programme date. You will be informed by 6.30am that morning if the programme needs to be cancelled.
A programme will be cancelled if:
- T3 or above is hoisted
- Red Rain or above is hoisted
In the event of a Thunderstorm, amber rain, or T1 signal, our programme activities will be adjusted as well as our location to ensure we have safe and accessible passage out to main roads, and that we have access to sheltered spaces to work on skills-based learning.
If a Red Rain or a T3 signal is hoisted during the programme, the group will travel to the nearest safe space or exit site, and parents will be contacted about arranging an earlier pick-up.
Benefits of continuing in the rain and 'imperfect' conditions
- Teaches the girls to adapt to different environments and situations
- Offers an opportunity to problem solve, improvise and think on our feet
- Allows them to listen to their bodies response to the environment, and learn how to dress accordingly
- Invites a new relationship with the rain, learning to see the beauty in that element, rather than a hinderance
- Can offer ideal bonding time, sharing experiences that stretch our comfort zones
HEALTH & SAFETY
We will continue to practice safe hygiene during these programmes in light of the escalation of Coronavirus cases in Hong Kong.
When signing up for this programme, guardians agree to the following terms below:
- Temperature checks for their child the morning before the programme begins. Temperatures above 37.5 may require the child to abstain from joining the programme.
- Each child to carry their own personal hygiene belongings of their choosing (Hand sanitizers, face masks etc).
- Disclose if they or their children have been abroad to any high-risk countries in the last 14 days. We ask that children do not attend group programmes within this period.
What we will do:
- We will bring organic soap that can be used if and when we are near a river to wash our hands. If we are not in a water-based environment, each child will be invited to use their own personal hygiene belongings whenever they choose to, but especially after any physical contact.
- We will reduce physical contact where possible, and encourage the group to practice asking for, and setting physical boundaries
- We will continue to serve tea ceremony with wild tea, however, we will not be sharing the tea to drink ourselves, but to serve the tea as a practice of gratitude to the natural environment, offering the tea to the soil.
Does my child have to wear a face mask during the programme?
No, not at all. In fact, we would be very happy that the girls to take masks off so they may breathe the fresh forest air! If you and your daughter decide they wish to wear a mask during the programme, that would also be welcome. We encourage all to do what they need to feel comfortable and safe.
Will the instructor wear masks during programmes?
No. We will focus on practising good hygiene before and during programmes, encouraging the girls to do the same. If physical touch is required in guiding or supporting the girls through terrain or skill, we will ask permission first.