KindleWoods - started by one (8 years ago), made happen by many.
Katie established the project after a long journey to overcome PTSD after a break in at her house, learning strategies to support her and building her confidence back up - discovering bushcraft and learning woodland management including obtaining her chainsaw license.
Passionate about both the environment and people's wellbeing, she set about developing the project as a way to genuinely carve change for both, establishing innovative, evidenced based 'Woodland Wellbeing' programmes.
What have we achieved?
Over the last two years we have worked with over 100 adults experiencing mental health challenges and 1500+ children in workshops at festivals. We have re-established half an acre of hazel coppice, and laid 200 metres of hedge!
Rob went from not getting out of bed, to attending two woodland wellbeing programmes, volunteering and then becoming employed by KindleWoods, building a timber frame structure with Ben Law and driving it 6 hours back north on an 18ft trailer.
Our three core values
Wellbeing, nature and community is at the heart of everything we do.
Help us to grow our woodland wellbeing programmes! With your help we can make it happen.
How we will use your pledge
We want to develop new overnight 'Wilderness Empowerment' programmes to boost confidence with adults experiencing a range of mental health challenges.
Your pledge will enable us to;
- Develop, test and run two Wilderness Empowerment Programmes with adults experiencing low self esteem, anxiety, depression and a range of other mental health or life challenges including bereavement.
- Purchase equipment needed to run the programmes
- Establish outcomes and evaluate the process and effectiveness of the project
- Why our courses work
- Our woodland wellbeing programmes are as powerful as they are because they bring together a combination of evidenced based techniques; they teach people about what supports their wellbeing whilst getting an opportunity to do it practically.
- 1. They are outside
Nature relieves stress. In evolutionary terms, we grew up in it. It makes sense that being outside makes us feel good. It's life in 3D and wakes us up.
2. With others
We are social beings. It's been shown that social isolation is as damaging to our health as smoking 15 cigarettes a day.
3. Being active
Regular physical activity is associated with a greater sense of wellbeing and lower rates of depression and anxiety.
4. Learning about wellbeing
We teach formally and informally about wellbeing. It may be in conversation; what works for you? Or it may be sitting down and doing a mindfulness practice together.
5. Mastering skills
There is nothing quite like mastering the ability to light a fire, or indeed sitting around it afterwards sipping a cup of hot tea. It gives you a wow moment and an opportunity to forget about the woes and worries you woke up with.
7. With purpose
Improving biodiversity and making use of a local renewable resource is a crucial part of the project, not just for nature, but also for ourselves. It's real world, it's important. It's about saying - yes, this world matters enough to do something about it.
6. Our ethos and approach
We are inclusive and celebrate success. We look for skills and see what can happen, what can be achieved. We believe in a persons here and now. We listen. We allow people to be as they are.
1. Awareness - being in the moment without judgement
2. Compassion - looking after
3. Self belief - seeing your skills
4. Discovery - what makes you zing!
4. Human needs - understanding what every person needs