We facilitate participant-directed nature experiences for people who might not otherwise have the opportunity to access, appreciate and understand the wild beauty surrounding Salt Lake City.
Our goals are to
Bolster the mental and physical health of vulnerable populations
Contribute to a more scientifically literate citizenry
Introduce traditionally non-participating audiences to outdoor recreation opportunities
Facilitate a sense of local belonging by connecting people to the landscape
Create a positive sense of land stewardship
Allow people who might be in a stressed situation an adventure, free of planned outcomes
There is an ever-growing body of evidence that time in nature decreases anxiety and depression in people of all ages, and that children are suffering many ill effects from the lack of free play time in the outdoors. However, for some groups of people the opportunity to get into natural environments can prove elusive. Once there, without a guide on hand to answer questions, particularly of safety, to point out curious phenomenon and to name objects of interest, the experience can be unappealing, overwhelming or even frightening. This can be especially true for people who are experiencing other kinds of stress in their family lives and might feel they don’t have the time or resources to explore this option. But it is those families who especially need the respite that nature can offer.
We are excited to work with people who might not be aware of the rich bounty of experiences so closely available to them in and around Salt Lake City. Our hope is to raise awareness that the beautiful outdoors are a place of play and of emotional refuge, that expensive equipment is not necessary and that it belongs to everyone.
We partner with nonprofits that are already providing programming for people who might not get these experiences in order to offer a unique field trip experience. With many years of natural history and classroom experience, our staff design safety/weather/fun appropriate experiences that enhance learning and play. At the site, we encourage exploration, answer questions, respond flexibly to the comfort level of the group we are working with.