NATURALISTS, TV presenters and authors are backing The Wildlife Trusts’ national nature challenge to do something ‘wild’ every day during June.
Sign-ups are rising and it is hoped to beat last year when an estimated 250,000 took part.
New research shows that 30 Days Wild is unique in improving people’s perception of beauty in nature, and that noticing natural beauty makes people happier and want to care for it.
Samuel West, actor and director lives in London where wild spaces are particularly important to him and his family. He says:
“Growing up, my parents (Timothy West and Prunella Scales) made sure we spent time around nature. Holidays outside, on canals or in the country, enjoying the peace and serenity of wildlife as a family. Even now, that’s hugely important.
“With two young children growing up in the city, we try to make sure that our kids have the same opportunities. We spend time in wild places, whether that’s venturing out into the countryside to look for birds or making the most of the amazing city greenspaces on our doorsteps, like Woodberry Wetlands in Hackney.
“Life for a family full of actors can be hectic; our time outdoors helps us reconnect with each other and focus on stuff that isn’t just us and our own narrow human worries. 30 Days Wild will help you fit a daily dose of nature in to your life, no matter where you live or how busy you are.”
New research shows that 30 Days Wild is unique in improving people’s perception of beauty in nature and that noticing natural beauty makes people happier and want to care for it.
Dr Miles Richardson, Director of Psychology, University of Derby, explains: “Over the past three years we’ve repeatedly found that taking part in 30 Days Wild improves health, happiness, nature connection and conservation behaviours. Now we’ve discovered that engagement with the beauty of nature is part of that story.
“Tuning-in to the everyday beauty of nature becomes part of a journey which connects us more deeply to the natural world. As people’s appreciation of natural beauty increases, so does their happiness. We respond to beauty – it restores us and balances our emotions. This, in turn, encourages people to do more to help wildlife and take action for nature.”
30 Days Wild is encouraging people to make their neighbourhoods wilder and green-up their streets, to help wildlife and to share the joy of nature.
Lucy McRobert, campaigns manager for The Wildlife Trusts says: “30 Days Wild is a lovely way to get closer to nature and marvel at the everyday wildlife that lives all around you. Sit quietly and enjoy watching dragonflies dance over a pond or take a moment to sow a window-box of wildflowers to help bees.
“Get together with your neighbours to create hedgehog highways or sow front-garden meadows along the length of your street. No matter how small the action, it all counts!”
30 Days Wild pack
Sign-up to 30 Days Wild at http://action.wildlifetrusts.org/page/20877/petition/1 and you’ll get a free pack with a booklet of inspirational ideas for Random Acts of Wildness, a recipe for wild strawberry and thyme ice cream, wildflower-seeded paper to sow, a wall chart to record your activities and wild stickers.
There are special online packs for schools with outdoor lesson plans and giant Random Act of Wildness cards.
Workplaces can join in too, with tailored download packs to bring the ‘wild’ to work