‘The purpose of Culture is for connecting people to nature, people to people and people to themselves.’
Jon Young on regenerative cultural design
I am passionate about social inclusion and the power of the outdoors. My formative experience in the woods and hills of Wales led me to international travel and the completion of a degree in Outdoor and Environmental Education at Charlotte Mason College and I have been a practitioner in the field since the month of July in the year 2000.
Through a brief apprenticeship with Sue Bennett of Eden Community Outdoors, I discovered the genius of supplementing more ‘traditional’ forms of adventurous outdoor learning with the human givens and cultural activities that all generations crave to feel comfortable in their skins. Since that time I have been involved in a number of organisations pursuing this calling; particularly indebted to Venture Scotland where I spent 8 years apprenticing to and leading ‘alongside’ socially excluded young people and volunteers through intensive personal development and environmental regeneration work.
More recently, I have found kinship with the ‘Eight Shields movement’ which provides synthesis, direction and structure in the task of cultural repair. With more than a nod to traditional cultural systems, the wee South Welsh boy in me sees clearly that these teachings have resonance with how our ancestors held the social fabric of society together.
‘Education for Sustainability’, isn’t going to address the rut we’re in. Who in the field of outdoor learning wants to enable or bolster healthy consumers? Consumerist culture, supported by a corporate driven global economy is killing everything; including curiosity. Nothing short of regenerative systems and pro-environmental behaviour change will address the attrition of community, culture and environment.
I am a keen canoeist, natural builder and fire tender; and continue to tend my relationship with the more than human world.
‘Consider your siblings;
They’ve flown the nest too;
Their wound is their gift
Aye; and their fledglings too.’