£10,000 grant boosts outdoor activities for disadvantaged people in Ceredigion

Charity Ceredigion will provide free outdoor wellness activities to isolated and disadvantaged people with funding from the Caring Communities Innovation Scheme.

Tir Coed will offer classes ranging from willow weaving and outdoor skills to den-making and adventure games to 80 people, including former service staff, carers, isolated women, neurodivergent learners and young people considered ‘at risk’ after receiving £9,785 from the fund.

Each of the 10 sessions will each provide approximately eight people with the opportunity to participate in outdoor activities appropriate to their situation alongside others in a similar situation.

Activities will be designed to ensure participants can enjoy the mental and physical benefits of spending meaningful time outdoors while having the opportunity to connect with others with similar experiences.

Statistics show that rural women with caring responsibilities have been disproportionately affected by lockdowns during the Covid-19 pandemic and were the last group able to return to work after restrictions eased, leaving them to more and more isolated.

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Similarly, ex-military personnel are more likely to suffer from alcoholism, depression, and anxiety, but produce above-average results when participating in skill-based outdoor activities.

Similarly, young people considered “at risk” of committing crimes often find it difficult to express themselves in a classroom, but can thrive in a hands-on, outdoor setting, which reduces the likelihood that they will become involved in antisocial behavior in the future.

Sessions will seek to support those affected through activities designed to promote well-being, confidence, social connections and skills in a fun, relaxing and healing outdoor environment.

“We are absolutely delighted to have received this grant from the Caring Communities Innovation Scheme,” said Tir Coed’s Director of Development, Teresa Walters.

“There is undeniable evidence of the benefits that nature brings to mental health and general well-being.

“By targeting these sessions to groups of individuals with a shared experience, we want to give people the opportunity to focus on practical activities, relax and forget their daily worries in an open and friendly atmosphere with others who can relate to their daily challenges.”

To learn more about available sessions, contact Tir Coed’s project manager, Cath Seymour, by email at [email protected] or call 01970 636909.

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