Children get muddy for Forest School launch

Thursday 6th July 2017

Fun and laughter were on the agenda at Everton Park Nature Garden as Lancashire Wildlife Trust officially launched its Liverpool Forest School project.

The event was a huge success, with four local schools involved in the project attending: St Margaret Mary’s Juniors; Our Lady Immaculate; Beacon C of E and Blueberry Park Primary.

The afternoon was filled with sunshine, mud, smiling faces, bushcraft activities and words of encouragement from local police officers, charities, community groups, teachers, residents and politicians such as Gideon Ben-Tovim OBE, Mayoral Advisor for the Natural Environment.

Lancashire Wildlife Trust’s Forest School project has been overwhelmingly successful in Manchester, reaching 1,325 children, training up 33 teachers to Level 3 Forest School practitioners, delivering over 600 individual sessions, and working across 12 different schools in just under three years, all thanks to players of People’s Postcode Lottery. It hopes to work with thousands more children over the coming years.

Chairman of Nature Connected and Mayoral Advisor, Gideon Ben-Tovim OBE said “Forest Schools is a really fabulous development, and it’s already proven to be great for the children’s emotional wellbeing, great for their physical activity and great for their learning. It’s a really positive initiative, and there’s good scientific evidence behind that now - a day at forest school is actually better than a day of doing PE.

“For people that don’t have immediate access to green spaces, or a garden or park across the road, this is a way of trying to make it fairer across Liverpool for all our young people, to experience the natural environment. This could help provide a life-long development for young people into the future”.

Forest School Officer, Emma Ackerley said “The event was such a success, all the children and adults got so involved, pressing flowers, making dens and learning about nature through free play. There was such a sense of community spirit throughout the day, with local groups from The Shewsy next door coming over to get involved with forest school.

“We really want to engage urbanised children back with nature, and are also working with other practitioners to ensure the forest school network across Merseyside can get as many children as we can, experiencing forest school.”