Leicester City in the Community has become one of the first places to offer a Level 1 Forestry in the Community qualification to young people looking for a career in woodlands.
The Royal Forestry Society (RFS) pilot project is an exciting new collaboration with Forest School specialist, Sarah Lawfull, pictured above, thanks to funding from The ALA Green Charitable Trust.
Sarah will be leading the pilot alongside staff from Leicester City in the Community. They will be giving 30 disadvantaged young people a chance to gain hands on skills and their first recognised qualification. RFS Learning and Outreach Manager Becky Wilkinson said: “We are delighted to be working with Sarah and the team at Leicester City in the Community’s outreach community programme. This pilot is looking to break down barriers and to open young people’s eyes to the wide and exciting opportunities that forestry can offer.”
Sarah is co-founder of the Nature Premium campaign, Director of Where The Fruit Is, Chair of the Forest School Association and an FSA endorsed Forest School Trainer.
She says: “I am honoured to be working with the RFS and Leicester City in the Community to deliver this exciting new qualification. Throughout my career in mainstream education and then Forest School, I have advocated for children and young people to be given regular access to nature-based learning.
“Providing Forest School programmes for autistic teenagers and other young people facing barriers to accessing school I discovered how they came alive in the woods. This qualification provides the next step for these young people. Offering a practical, engaging route to gaining a qualification whilst building self-worth, and gaining knowledge and skills around woodland management and community engagement.”
Dr Alex Evans is Leicester City in the Community’s Environmental Sustainability Coordinator. He says: “This is a fantastic opportunity for young people who are looking for skill development and career support outside of the classroom. “We look forward to working alongside Sarah and the Royal Forestry Society in engaging, empowering and inspiring a new generation interested in forestry, and connecting communities with nature.”
The Level 1 Forestry in the Community qualification was designed by the RFS as a first step qualification into a career in forestry and woodland management. It is accredited by AIM. Additional roll outs are planned throughout England during 2022 -2023, including in Kent.
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