Education, Latest News, Swanage, Weymouth | Posted: Monday, June 29th, 2020 at 12:48 pm | return to news

Dorset centres providing outdoor activities for children

Children and young people in Dorset have been able to enjoy plenty of outdoor activities during lockdown.

Children enjoying outdoor activities
Children enjoying outdoor activities

Dorset Council’s Outdoor Education Service have been welcoming small groups to the four centres across the county, working with local schools to run activities for children of key workers and vulnerable young people.

Lessons in rock climbing, bushcraft, orienteering and caving have taken place at Weymouth Outdoor Education Centre.

Youngsters have also had a chance to try orienteering, pond studies, shelter building and safe fire lighting at Leeson House in Swanage.

The Ancient Technology Centre at Cranborne and Carey Outdoor Education Centre at Wareham have also kept youngsters busy making fairy wands, minibeast hunts, flower collages and building shelters.

Artz + Sportz+ (a project managed by the Cultural Development Unit at Dorset Council) spent May half term with the outdoor education centres enjoying arts and sports activities with groups of children and young people who are disabled.

Andrew Parry, Dorset Council Portfolio Holder for Children, Education and Early Years, said, “Being outside in nature is so important for our mental wellbeing. By offering fun outdoor activities for children and young people, keeping them occupied and learning new skills, we have also been able to provide a bit of respite for families in lockdown. By keeping the groups nice and small, or often working one-to-one, we have been able to maintain Government guidelines on social distancing.

“The Outdoor Education Centres are also responsible for the Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) Awards and I am proud of the young people who are working towards their Award during this crisis.  Some have joined their community volunteer teams, others taken on the mentoring of younger siblings or simply stepped up to help their families cope at home.

“As lockdown measures are gradually eased, we are working to expand the offer from the Dorset Outdoor Education services for more young people to enjoy in the near future and ensure Dofe trips goes ahead as planned.”

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