National land management charity the Land Trust has revealed an outstanding contribution towards education in the UK in their newly released annual review.
The Trust launched a five-year educational strategy in 2018, which set out to build relationships with schools, nurseries and local communities in order to educate people in the outdoor environment.
In the first year of the new strategy, the Land Trust has welcomed 11,000 children to their parks and green spaces across the country to take part in organised educational activities, such as Forest Schools, tree planting and bug hunts.
Not only does the Land Trust organise educational activities for children, its flagship Green Angels project offered free environmental training to adults on three new sites in 2018-19. Courses which include environmental education, practical countryside management and outdoor survival skills have been extremely popular, with many participants going on to volunteer on site afterwards.
The Land Trust’s sites in Warrington were awarded Educational Site of the Year at the Trust’s annual awards ceremony this year for the huge involvement the local community has in using the green spaces for educational benefits.
Several local schools use the spaces for outdoor lessons and some areas are used as a base for Green Angels courses and volunteering sessions, which run throughout the year. Alan Carter, Director of Portfolio Management at the Land Trust, said: “The transformation we’ve seen in some of the people who use our sites has been incredible.
“Children who struggled to stay focussed in a classroom environment have really got stuck in and learnt some valuable things while outdoors.
“It’s not just the children though, the adults who take part in Green Angels have really benefited from the courses. Some of them have gone on to work in the environmental sector as a result.
“Not all of these spaces are big Country Parks or nature reserves, but they really can teach us a lot.”
The Land Trust aims to further increase the amount of educational activities held on sites throughout the next year, with more sessions and courses being held across the country.
Green Angels courses have now been rolled out on sites in Chester, South Yorkshire and Dover and will provide opportunities for local communities to learn about the green spaces.
The Trust has continued to develop its relationships with local schools, mainly with the production of an Education Pack, which is a free resource for those who want to teach children about the local environment.
The education pack, which was originally produced for the Trust’s site Davy Down, is adaptable to different landscapes and environments and contains resources for lessons for primary school children.
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