Reconnect in nature founder gives TedX talk on the value of lived experience in mental health recovery
Our founder Andrew Dugmore offers an insight into a deeply misunderstood area of mental health, that of schizophrenia. He offers a story of hope and recovery, with a message for[…]Read more
Reconnect In Nature is a community interest company that helps people reconnect with their natural environment, reconnect with themselves and create a community that supports each other.
Since 2009 as the work of Reconnect has progressed, that which has been hidden has slowly revealed itself. What we have all discovered is that our work follows through 5 simple principles.
We believe in nature as a healer.
We foster peer-to-peer support.
We facilitate outdoor and creative activities.
We provide space and time for individuals.
We help boost confidence, skills and outlook.
Nature Connections and Wellbeing Courses
We’ve worked with over 70 participants on our courses in Pembrokeshire. Many success stories were recorded with participants experiencing significant shifts in their well being and confidence, improvements in social skills, learning new skills, becoming passionate about the activities that they had discovered and some also gaining employment.
We teaching simple mindfulness in nature skills. Connecting to the natural world is at the core of our work.
Fostering a supportive group environment, enabling new friendships, and improving communication and teamwork skills.
We help people learn camp craft skills, and enable them to be creative through nature art and nature writing
We train people in simple digital storytelling so we can share our message and boost digital skills.
The Journey of Understanding
In September 2014, a community project called the “Journey of Understanding” was delivered in partnership with Time to Change Wales and Hywel Dda health trust. It was a two-day walking journey that helped challenge common misconceptions of mental health problems by promoting the skills and positive aspects of people with mental health problems.
Here is a list of other projects we have worked on.
We offer deeper nature experiences and have worked with participants on overnight residential experiences to help them connect even more with their surroundings and each other.
We work and share knowledge with a range of partners in West Wales including Communities First, Clynfyw care farm, West Wales Action for Mental Health, Drop in at the Dock and NHS Wales.
Nature Connections and Wellbeing 2018
Our Nature Connections and Wellbeing project aims to build capacity for the delivery of a Nature Connections and Wellbeing Course through four main ways….. .
It is supported through the Leader Programme in Pembrokeshire.
1. Train the Trainer course.This course is designed to empower, nurture and train a group of volunteers to become accredited nature connection activity leaders to assist in the delivery of the Nature Connections and Wellbeing course. 2. Nature Connections Toolkit
The Nature Connections and Wellbeing course will be written up, packaged and presented as a tool kit for future delivery.
3. Delivery of the Nature Connections and Wellbeing course during 2018.The nature connections course aims to introduce participants to the proven therapeutic benefits of engaging in nature based activities and the benefits of peer mentor support. The course will be delivered to communities within Pembrokeshire and will offer valuable opportunities for newly trained volunteer Nature Connection leaders to practice to their new skills and knowledge.
4.Digital Media Training.
A small group of participants will be trained to capture simple digital media images, to capture the essence of the work of each course, enabling the course activities to be shared via digital media.
Nature Connections and Wellbeing has been initially developed as a collaborative partnership project with Reconnect, The Peer Project ( formerly Drop in at the dock recovery centre) and Communities first Pembroke Dock.
Our team is a combination of project workers and volunteers.
Director and Founder
Andrew has considerable experience in outdoor groups, team building, event management, mental health recovery, post graduate mentoring studies and is a mental health first aid trainer.
Mike is a filmmaker and photographer who leads on digital media and storytelling side of our work. Mike also has an MSc in Sustainable development.
Our Volunteer Network
We have a group of volunteers who support our work and each other.
Hannah leads our creative days, connecting to nature through creative writing and nature art.
Nature Connection Leader
Amanda is a psychotherapist and coach, focusing on leadership and growth, working with leaders in the arts and international development sectors. She’s a qualified yoga & mindfulness teacher and developed the 2008 Slow Down London festival
Nature Connection Leader
Trudie is a trained Consultant Clinical Psychologist formely working in the NHS. She’s particularly interested in developing more adventurous ways to improve wellbeing in children and adults and also digital storytelling.
Director & Nature Connection Leader
Suzi has a private Outdoor Psychotherapy Practice based in woodlands near her home town of Narberth. She also works as a Clinical Psychologist in the NHS and is very engaged in the Green Health agenda for Hywel Dda University Health Board, improving green spaces for the benefit of people and the natural living world. Suzi is passionate about healing our relationship with nature and the environment and experiences a deep connection with the local landscape, loving to run local trails as well as along the stunning Pembrokeshire Coastal Path
In 2014 we undertook an evaluation of our work by speaking to those that have been involved in our courses.“The organisation offers participants a ‘journey’, enabling each person to progress at their own pace and in their own way, whether that be into further learning activities, voluntary work, or employment.” 2014 Evaluation Report