DD Charity Blog
A place for us to highlight the great work of charitable groups we are supporting with donations of DD Hammocks Gear each month. We are proud to be working with community engagement programs, mental health charities and more to provide equipment and easy access to the great outdoors for those in need.
DD Charity Update - September 2023
September is here and with it, the first changing of the leaves - and we reckon there's no better time for everyone and everyone to enjoy this magical turn of nature!
This month we catch up with Kindlewoods CIC; a woodland social enterprise based in Yorkshire, England. From mental health to hedgerow planting and oak tree-maintenence, Kindlewoods is a hardworking team who use creative, evidence based approaches to take on the challenges to our community social health and environment.
KindleWoods CIC is a woodland social enterprise situated in North Yorkshire, running mental health programmes in woodlands currently with serving personnel in the UK military and young people with ADHD and Autism who are unable to access traditional education. Not only this, but Kindlewoods is passionate about empowering and engaging the local community by using a combination of their skills and experience to run transformative woodland wellbeing programmes and sustainably manage local woodland.
Amongst its community programmes, KindleWoods offers an expansive Woodland Wellbeing course, focusing on personal development, looking after the environment and social immersion, particularly in the immediate post Covid-19 period:
“Throughout our nine-year history, KindleWoods has worked with a diverse range of people within the North Yorkshire community, like vulnerable children, adults and families, as well as many people experiencing low mood, anxiety, depression or other mental health challenges. Designed around the Five Ways to Wellbeing, our person-centred programmes use a holistic approach, helping you to develop resilience, gain confidence, and learn new skills.
We cover a different wellbeing topic aimed at stress reduction in each session, all whilst actively supporting the sustainable management of local woodlands, improving biodiversity, and helping to harvest renewable resources. The activities offered at Woodland Wellbeing Sessions are largely based on your needs and preferences, but here are some of the most popular activities that our expert practitioners can lead on:
Fire-lighting – Almost always top of the agenda when participants arrive. Either learn some all-weather fire-lighting techniques from our wellbeing practitioners or simply relax until the fire is roaring, so we can have a chat over a cup of tea. We can build on your skills with each session and love seeing complete beginners turn into experts over time.
Woodwork – Calming craft activities, like learning to whittle spoons and knives on one of our shave horses, often have a meditative effect due to the repetitive processes involved. Plus, you get to take home whatever you create!
Bushcraft – Learn practical skills to thrive in nature, like cooking pizza, puddings, and bread on the fire, or cutting wood with a bowsaw.
Conservation – With so much of our work relying on the transformative power of nature, it feels amazing to know your visit has helped the woodlands to thrive in return. Opportunities include coppicing in winter, planting seeds in spring, hedge laying, and assisting with forest management.
Mindfulness techniques - Sir David Attenborough says the effects on our wellbeing of spending just ten minutes in a forest are 'extraordinary'. Our wellbeing practitioners harness this restorative ability while building your knowledge of mindfulness theory and practical coping techniques, which you can apply easily in your day-to-day life.
Social time – Lockdown in the UK has led to unprecedented levels of social isolation. The KindleWoods team is a super friendly bunch, and we are great listeners if you just want to chat. Any members of your family or support bubble are also welcome to join you at a session."
In order to help KindleWoods CIC get as many of those who need the healing benefits of nature into the great outdoors, we've donated 10 sets of our DD Charity Edition Scout hammocks and Scout tarps - we very much hope that the volunteers, staff and clients of KindleWoods enjoys the new gear, and we very much hope to catch up with Katie and the team after their September event, where 80 members of KindleWoods are camping out in nature!
Just because Autumn is peering round the corner it doesn't mean that it's time to stop going outdoors - in fact, we want to keep on helping as many people, groups and charities get out and about in nature as we can!
So, if you know of a charity, group or cause with a focus on the outdoors and a passion for helping those less fortunate get out into nature that would benefit from some free outdoor equipment plus a spot on the DD Charity Blog to showcase their work, we would love to hear from you!
Help us support even more people, and get involved by getting in touch with us via our DD Charity contact form.
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About the writer
A regular on the hiking trails of Northern Scotland, Vikki loves nothing more than being in the great outdoors. When she's not pulling on her hiking boots or trail shoes, this DD Team Member can often be spotted in the gym or curled up at home with a sketchpad and pencil.