Since 2016 we have worked with Outdoor People to provide outdoor camping experiences for families from inner-city areas.
‘Fairyland’ is a perfect first camping experience space. The five acres of deciduous woodland is fenced so families feel safe letting their children roam and have fun in the natural play area. It has space for tents, a huge camp cooking area, running water and eco toilets.
We support Outdoor People by:
Teaching children about the farm and the food chain
Taking the families to feed chickens, herd sheep and feed pigs
Making pizza in the Community Garden with freshly picked ingredients
Providing space for equipment to be stored (saving on storage fees in London)
Guiding nature walks, woodland trails and night hikes
We believe children – and their families - benefit from spending time outdoors. Camping isn’t within everyone’s reach. Equipment can be costly, as can travel, pitch fees and so on. Camping can also be a daunting experience if you have never done it before.
Working with Outdoor People, we can remove many of these barriers and introduce families to new experiences. We know the impact – and the memories they create – last a lifetime
Each family takes something different from their camping experience. Here’s what some of them have told us:
“We have had an absolutely amazing time! It's been a while since I had this "camping with my toddler" idea in my head, the Outdoor People made it possible!!"
“I would never have done anything like this with the kids… now we spend time together having fun. We now go on little walks, on little hunts for things, and the kids are picking up sticks and leaves that we have to keep at home! So we’re all in touch with nature now.”
“I feel accomplished after, like I’ve done something good with my kids.”
“This has encouraged us to get outside more often - we try every day - and to explore the local green spaces in and around Hackney. Even though we grew up in Hackney I realised I hadn't taken my kids to some long forgotten areas and we have discovered others such as Wick Woods. Outdoor People also provided us with some waterproofs for the kids so we can go out in wet weather which is not something I would have considered before but we have got out in the rain a few times and the kids love it!”
“They have inspired me to get out more, be more adventurous and get out in weather I may have avoided before.”
Phil has ADHD and some learning difficulties. The change in Phil just one year after his trip to Green Farm for family camping was amazing. Here he is (on the left) on the first day of his first visit to Green Farm as part of the Outdoor Families Camping, brought by his aunt and grandmother and two cousins; on the right, just one year later, he was climbing Mount Snowdon
Now aged 12 he recently sent us a message to tell us “I went out on my skateboard every day this summer!”
This change is not just down to him; he was joined by members of his extended family and this support is essential
*not his real name