Kilkenny youngsters learn lifelong skills through course in nature

Mary Cody

Reporter:

Mary Cody

Email:

mary.cody@kilkennypeople.ie

Kilkenny youngsters learn lifelong skills through course in nature

Participants will learn a wide range of skills over the next six months

Twelve lucky Kilkenny youngsters will embark on a magical journey later this month.
Nature for Wellbeing - Journey Home is a course run by Ossory Youth and facillitated by Maura Brennan of Sli Na Coille or Kilkenny Forest School.
“We had designed the programme and sought funding last year but with the Covid 19 pandemic it is even more prevalent now,” said youth worker, Eilis Walklett.
The course runs from the end of July to December and is designed to help participants to discover their gifts and develop their potential.
“ It aims to develop nature connection and learn skills, develop community, build confidence and resilience in the self and help participants develop the necessary skills of communication, leadership and discipline to prepare for the next steps as they move forward on life' s path.
“It will be a fun, exciting, empowering and transformative experience. Through youth work, forest therapy and traditional skills we can offer a modern-day rite of passage and support young people as they transition between childhood and adulthood,” said Eilis.
“ As we live in a modern, complex society this stage of life is no longer demarcated by a widely practised rite of passage, instead young people often feel lost, anxious, disconnected from adults, children and the world around them as they focus more on screens and indoor activities.
Practical Skills that will be taught include cordage, bindings and knots, weaving and spinning using wool and plant fibres, using willow, reeds and other foraged materials, knife safety and knife carving, correct tool use and maintenance, shelter building, friction fire and tinder, foraging, identification skills, medicinal and edible properties of wild plants, wild cooking and ancient cooking traditions.