Friday, 17 December 2010

Outdoors Unlocked

Some of you will already know that my very own Bear Grylls of a husband is attempting to set up his own business promoting, teaching and training Forest School and Bushcraft skills to anyone and everyone, but particularly in schools. Today he has an interview with some people who very kindly give out money to worthwhile causes.

The trouble is, we have to convince them that it is worthwhile.

If I am honest, when he first began with his business idea I didn't think alot of it. I am married to a dreamer, who is constantly conjuring up new ideas, businesses and ways to save the world. I have heard so many of them that now I tend to ignore as much as possible, knowing that they will never come to fruition.

However, as I have helped him write funding applications and listened to his passion I have realised that this idea might actually become a reality. This isn't a business plan that will make us money, this is a business plan that will improve society. Children who have been shunned by traditional academia will have their confidence restored. Families who only spend time together when sitting in front of a screen will explore the outdoors together. Businesses who want to build teams can go back to basics with fire lighting and shelter building. Boys will be able to climb trees and scrape their knees again without being frowned upon. Girls will be able to make 'fairy dens' and collect flowers to press (I know, girls like climbing trees too... but most boys do not like building fairy dens and pressing flowers). Families will be able to forage for food for their dinner, make a fire and cook it. People, including children (sharp intake of breath required for all health and safety activists), will learn how to use axes, knives and hammers safely. The outdoors will be opened up again. The doors will be unlocked.

If you have been reading my blog for any amount of time, you will know that I find the traditional education system difficult. Jared's venture will enable us as a family to make a difference to that. My heart weeps when I hear 9, 10 and 11 year old boys talking about how they are 'no good' at reading and writing. I want to scream and shout when I read articles that report their surprise in the fact that boys lag behind girls substantially in schools. I see a great injustice in our system and I want to be part of the change, even if my part is small.

We want to open the doors and pave the way to the great, marvellous, exciting, inspiring outdoors and make it a way of life for people who have never even considered the opportunities and adventures that can be had out there. Is it worthwhile? I think so.

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