The WildChild Project will work with families and children across the Transforming the Trent Valley Landscape Partnership Scheme area through informal education activities that encourage them to understand, visit and want to take care of the heritage of the Trent Valley Washlands. This will be achieved through a range of activities including Wildlings and Nature Tots (aimed at pre-school children), Wildplay and Forest Schools as well as working with schools to refer them on to the Big Washlands Watch project. The project aims to influence future generations by engaging with families we have the opportunity, not only to influence the next generation, but also to increase the use of natural open spaces for recreation, learn about and value the heritage on their doorstep.
As well as delivering activities we will also offer taster and training days for parents to provide support and ideas for family days out throughout the project area.
A project officer will be appointed to co-ordinate and run the activities, with occasional sessional support where required.
Families engaged will have a greater knowledge of accessible sites and strategies for engaging with nature. They will have learned about appropriate use of wildlife & heritage sites and their use will continue past the life of this funded project.
Some elements of this project will be able to continue past its initial funded term, Wildlings, Wildfamilies and Nature Tots all run in other parts of the county on a charged-for sustainable basis. Often we find that when something has been offered for free for many years, introducing a charge is almost a death blow. This project will be offering greatly subsidised fees for sessions, with attendees clear that they are being subsidised by The National Lottery Heritage Fund. The school engagement will also be able to continue on a paid for basis, as we do elsewhere in the county. The level of delivery will no doubt reduce as the need to cover staff time may divert the focus away from this area, unless we find a new source of funding to continue subsidising the role.