Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Turn Around Project Information Evening

The Wilderness Foundation UK is holding an information evening about it's innovative, long-term programme to support troubled teenagers - the Turn Around Project.

Parents, carers or professionals interested in putting young people of 15-17 years of age forward for the programme are invited to attend, along with any individuals who believe that they would be an eligible candidate for Turn Around.

Turn Around pulls together the power of nature, voluntary work, environmental projects and life coaching to support young people willing to work towards a positive future. The project runs for nine months and has recently finalised the team of volunteer adult coaches who will work with the participants.

Volunteers will be giving a large chunk of personal time to the progamme and will spend time with the youths and guides in a remote wilderness area on the Isle of Mull in November. In addition, they will work with their allocated protege on a weekly basis helping and encouraging them to make positive changes in their lives, take responsibility for themselves and to develop an attitude that if you want to do something badly enough you can get there in the end.

The coaches are all local people (Turn Around is running in the north of Essex during its pilot phase) with a deep sense of commitment to youth, the community and positive futures. Asked individually about their life philosophy some of the answers reveal the positive spirit with which they face the world - "I love learning new things"; "I believe that anything is possible in life"; "Happiness is what you make for yourself"; "I really enjoy being with young people"; "I believe we can all make a difference to the world in making it a better place". All coaches will be given intense training and support in life coaching, child protection and working with young people.

Project Manager Edward Charles:

It is evident that a project is only as strong as its parts and the calibre of the coaches is a strong indiciation of the commitment by Turn Around to create a more positive community and support young people with the many diverese problems they face today. They are all people with a brilliantly positive attitude to life which is infectious to all who work with them".
The information evening takes place in Chelmsford on Tuesday 4th September between 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. For further details or to book a place for the information evening telephone 01245 443073 and speak to Eddie or Sue or alternatively email info@wildernessfoundation.org.uk.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Extract from Robert Macfarlane's new book

In today's Telegraph Magazine:

Get the book in our Bookshop"Intrigued by the moors, caves and tors that have been muscled off our maps by roads and motorways, Robert Macfarlane set out to chart the forgotten wild places of the British Isles. In this extract from his new book, he ventures down Dorset's ancient overgrown highways..." - Read more here.
Get the book in our Bookshop. Happy reading!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Noise Pollution vs. Wilderness Quiet

Foreign Policy Magazine's Deniz Ozdemir reports that:

"A new study of European cities by the WHO has found that the emotional distress caused by noise pollution is responsible for three out of every 100 deaths typically blamed on heart disease. This could translate to as many as 210,000 deaths in Europe each year due to lack of peace and quiet. The unwanted raucous increases levels of stress hormones, even while we sleep, which can then lead to heart failure, strokes, high blood pressure, and immune problems if present in the bloodstream for extended periods of time." - Full post.
Time to retreat from city life for a while? Why not join one of our Wilderness Trails?

Career in the Wilderness - Broad Green Edition

Here's an autumn update to our previous posting on Career in the Wilderness? Last time we looked at specific opportunities - This time we round up some of the best places to look for green jobs in general:

Talking of Facebook - Join Wilderness Foundation Friends there too.

IUCN Peace Parks book explores how protected areas can resolve conflict

Just in from the IUCN:

A book which examines how environmental conservation can be used to contribute to peace-building in conflict zones has just been published.

Peace Parks, with a foreword by the World Conservation Union’s Director General, Julia Marton-Lefèvre, explores how the parks can help resolve political and territorial disputes.

The book, edited by Saleem Ali, who is a member of IUCN’s World Commission on Protected Areas, describes real-life examples such as the Selous-Niassa Wildlife Corridor in Africa and the Emerald Triangle conservation zone in Indochina. It also looks to the future and investigates the peace-building potential of envisioned parks in security-intensive areas, such as the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea and the US-Mexican border.

In her foreword, Julia Marton-Lefèvre wrote: “The linkage between a healthy environment and peace is increasingly apparent. Many of the roots of current and future conflicts stem from competition for scarce natural resources."
Read more - and find out how to order from the IUCN. We look forward to reading it too.

Learn more about our Sustainable Peace Programme which we run in partnership with the Glencree Centre for Reconciliation as well as the Roots of Reconciliation: Humanising Enemies wilderness based course.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

From Wilderness Aesthetics to Ethics

We've just learnt about a new course called "From Wilderness Aesthetics to Ethics" run by the Environmental Ethics Institute at the University of Montana - It is focused on Wilderness Aesthetics and Ethics in North America and looks interesting:

"Historically, in the United States wilderness preservation was motivated by primarily aesthetic concerns. For example, Thomas Moran’s paintings of Yellowstone were decisive in creating Yellowstone National Park. In the 19th century there was a direct link between wilderness aesthetics and an environmental ethics focused on preservation. The connection between wilderness aesthetics and environmental ethics is evident in the works of painters like Moran, and essayists like Emerson, Thoreau and Muir. These artists created a legacy where conservation efforts are to an important degree built on the aesthetic appreciation of nature—the experience of the sublime. This legacy has come to be called 'the received wilderness ideal.' However, over the last several decades this legacy has been severely criticized." - Learn more.
The course is 100% online and discussion based. As the course leaders say:
"It will be your chance to collaborate with great minds from around the world who are passionate about this specific topic."
Registration deadline is the 10th of October. Here's the course outline for convenience:

Week 1:
The Wilderness Tradition in American Thought Deconstructing Wilderness: Cronin. Why the Wilderness Ideal should be preserved: Sagoff Kant and Emerson

Week 2:
Wilderness and Transcendence: Thoreau, Muir, Dillard and Snyder

Week 3:
Wilderness Transcendence and Preservation: Slide Show, Leopold

Week 4:
The Great New Wilderness Debate: Guha, Naess, Rolston, Callicot, Cronin and Mann

Week 5:
Preserving the Tradition: Rolston, Carlson, Saito

Week 6:
Review and open discussion: What were some key issues in the course? What surprised you most? What would you like to know more about?

They also have another online course called The History of Environmental Thought and Ideas.

Also, do see our 'A few Wilderness Resources for Academics' article.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Wilderness and Troubled Youth

It is with interested that we heard that a wilderness approach to dealing with troubled youth is also being used in places like the Middle East - In today's Jerusalem Post:

"A form of 'wilderness therapy' and psychotherapy has brought significant improvement to Haifa teenagers suffering from violent behavior, concentration problems, anxieties and other problems caused by rocket attacks and chaotic conditions during the Second Lebanon War."

"Nitza Riklin, a Hebrew University-trained psychologist who has worked at the Health Ministry's Tirat Carmel Mental Health Center for 12 years, adapted 'wilderness therapy,' which has for years been popular for 'straightening out' troubled people in the US, Australia and elsewhere. In those countries, program participants live in primitive conditions for many days to receive therapy and to learn to cooperate." --- Read the full article.
Have a dig through our archive to learn more about this important approach.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Blog Action Day

Blog Action Day for the EnvironmentWe're signed up. If you've got a blog, why not sign up too?

"On October 15th - Blog Action Day, bloggers around the web will unite to put a single important issue on everyone's mind."

We first heard about the Blog Action day through the blog written by Alexander Kjerulf, also known as 'The Chief Happiness Officer'. He writes about the challenges of the modern workplace and says:
"And what, I hear you ask, does the environment have to do with happiness at work? Lots, I tell you. Many companies are finding, that when they change their business to be more environmentally sustainable, their employees experience a growing sense of pride in the company - leading to more happiness at work."
You can find more of his musings and insights on Happiness at Work here: http://positivesharing.com/ - Also, don't forget - as a blogger there's plenty you can do to help raise wilderness awareness:

Monday, August 20, 2007

Latest issue of Journal of Wilderness now out

International Journal of Wilderness - Click to learn more and to subscribeAs reported by our friends at Wild:

"This issue features the keynote speech given by WILD Founder Dr. Ian Player at the 8th World Wilderness Congress titled “Soul of the Wilderness” and Bittu Sahgal’s piece “It’s a Wonderful World.” Bittu was recently recognized with the WILD Writing Award for his life-long commitment to the spirit of wild nature and human rights."
Learn more and subscribe.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Ride Earth - New blog post

New posting from Ride Earth:

"The Ride Earth Fellowship was broken yesterday as Andy and I said our goodbyes to Mark, who now returns home to the UK.

It seems odd that the journey that took him two months to make by bicycle will be undone in less than 24 hours. The adventures and experiences that we have had within those two months give a real insight into the value of taking the idea of travelling a little slower, and experiencing the journey itself rather than the destination."
Read the rest » http://www.ride-earth.org.uk/blog/

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

African adventure for Norwich city schoolgirl

In today's Norwich Evening News:

"A Norwich school pupil will be swapping textbooks for trekking in the African wilderness and playing football with Zulus.

Army cadet Lauren McKenna is off to South Africa in the autumn to learn about other cultures and raise money for a charity in the process."
The article continues:

"The teenager, who has been in the Army Cadet Force since she was 14, has raised £1,700 towards the trip, through sponsored walks, bag packing at supermarkets and washing cars.

Of that amount, £500 will go towards flights and the remaining £1,200 will go to the Wilderness Foundation charity in South Africa, which aims to preserve the country's natural wilderness.

Lauren said: “The money it makes from these trips goes to help young children who have lost parents to HIV/Aids and allows them to go to school and it also helps farmers get a fair income from their efforts.”
Full article: African adventure for city schoolgirl

Friday, August 03, 2007

Dear Reader - What you can do to make a difference today

Help us with the power of word of mouth - here's how:

Also, if you're a Facebook user, why not join the Wilderness Foundation UK Friends?

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