Wild Vision Forest School
At the start of the year, we set up Wild Vision Forest School, an exciting new pilot project, for children and young people who have a visual impairment. This was a unique, fully funded project and the first for the blind community in the south! Funding and was initially provided by East Sussex County Council's Hastings OA Enrichment and Re-engagement with Learning Fund.
Since the success of the project, we have extended the project to a monthly group and currently have funding for the next six months, thanks to the supportive funding from John Jackson Charitable Trust.
We provide exciting sensory opportunities enabling the children to build new friendships, confidence, independence and have fun together. The sessions offer respite in a natural environment for both the visually impaired child/ young person and their parent.
The activities are stimulating, sensory and nature-based to nurture physical and emotional wellbeing. Activities include: campfire building and lighting, campfire cooking, tool work to make simple wooden objects, natural crafts, shelter building, tree planting, foraging, sensory games, hammocks and swings.
The Wild Vision sessions increase the visually impaired children’s opportunities to access activities which they have not experienced before. We want to break down the barriers for these children and enable them to learn new skills in a fun, supportive and inclusive outdoor environment, Through the high adult to child ratio support, we are able to offer exciting, sensory rich, hands-on, fun sessions. We want to encourage those with sight loss to try new experiences with what could be perceived as more ‘hard to access’ activities and environments. These sessions enable us to support the individual needs of the children and their adults and develop positive relationships, with a view to offering regular Wild Vision sessions in the future.