L really enjoyed Yenworthy. She came back much more confident and with a real 'I can do this' attitude'

J got to succeed at Yenworthy in a way he often finds challenging to do in class. His self esteem really improved

S benefited hugely from this visit. He is definitely within his comfort zone when doing adventurous activities. S has low levels of speech and language skills but this was not evident during the week! Since returning to school, S has enjoyed sharing his experiences and has produced some great writing.

A struggles at school but the opportunity for him to go to Woodlands meant he could succeed just like his peers and even outshine them. He usually would give up easily but Woodlands staff encouraged him to persist and we expect this will change his attitude to school work

S's biggest challenge was her own fear. She appeared at times on the verge of disengaging but was open to supportive interventions and made huge steps forward in addressing her fears. It was a privilege to work with her and her peers strongly endorsed her achievement

J performed wonderfully all week. He seemed to embrace the kinaesthetic nature of the programme, taking on every challenge and engaing in a mature and effective way with our staff. This all surprised his teachers.

T had a wonderful week and triumphed over his concerns about being away from home. His enthusiasm and commitment carried him through all the challenges - a great effort.

A came home buzzing from Woodlands. He learned that he can give anything a try, even if it frightens him and trying new things has made his confidence grow. Thank you for giving him that opportunity.

Since going to Yenworthy, S has gained so much more confidence in herself. She did things I never dreamed she would manage. She said she trusted B (instructor) and talked to him - a real surprise!

I have learned that T can do anything if he puts his mind to it. He has become more confident in lots of ways. He was so brave to leave us and go away. He has come back being much more helpful doing things around the home!

I really enjoyed Yenworthy and am really glad I went. I hadn't wanted to go and leave my family for 5 whole days. I felt scared. My friends and teachers all helped me. The best activity was the zip wire. I felt so proud when I'd done it; I learned to be much braver.

The best thing was caving. I found the jobs we had to do difficult to remember but learned that everyone helping makes it all easier for us to do them.

My favourite part of the week was pushing myself to be the leader when we were climbing the waterfall.. I struggled doing the spaghetti tangle; we really had to try hard to work as a team for it to work. I learned to include others more. I learned a lot about my friend, that he was brave and helpful.

M was scared sometimes but he found his courage and distracted himself by helping other children who were more frightened (parent)

The outdoor learning experiences were great opportunities for him to challenge himself as well as overcoming fears. This was certainly a beneficial trip for M both educationally and socially and he has become more independent in his learning (teacher)

Although I was really frightened, people encouraged me and made me confident. (child)

After completing the high ropes course, T became very calm and collected and offered advice to others, including the headteacher, to help them cross one of the high obstacles. (teacher)

The best thing was spending lots of quality time with my friends, getting to know them better and enjoying the experiences together (child)


Outdoor Learning Centres

Oxfordshire schools have a good reputation for ensuring that children educated in their schools have the opportunity to take part in many outdoor learning activities.

Oxfordshire Outdoors (Groundwork South) strongly promotes the value of outdoor learning and maintains three centres used by children and young people from across the county. All three centres are located out of the county, offering the opportunity for pupils to experience a different geographical area. The centres are: Kilvrough Manor on the Gower peninsula, Woodlands at Glasbury-on-Wye and Yenworthy Lodge on the edge of Exmoor.

Within the County there is also the Hill End Centre, 4 miles from central Oxford, near Farmoor, which operates as a not-for-profit charitable trust and is used by many Oxfordshire schools for day and residential visits, as well as being the Oxfordshire Early Years base.

Some schools use other activity and residential centres across the county and country as well as developing 'forest schools' and outdoor classrooms in their own grounds.

Young people of all abilities receive valuable coaching and experience to help them develop new skills, combining outdoor challenges with classroom learning.

Unfortunately, many children miss out on the wonderful opportunities available through school because their parents cannot afford the fees, for what are normally week-long residential courses. These are the young people the Trust particularly seeks to support.

Facebook JustGiving © 2011 Roy Nielsen