Pupils get green fingered with £10,000 grant to boost practical skills and emotional wellbeing
STUDENTS are getting to grips with nature after a £10,000 to boost their skills and self-esteem.
Children with learning disabilities and autism attending Dryden School in Gateshead will spend the next year taking part in a range of outdoor lessons thanks to funding from Awards for All.
Supported by creative ageing charity Equal Arts, more than 50 pupils aged between 11 and 19 will hone their skills in wood work, wood sculpture, horticulture and willow weaving.
With a focus on teamwork and confidence building they’ll also work alongside older volunteers from supported living schemes in Gateshead.
Liz Johnson, Assistant Head Teacher at Dryden School, said: “This funding is a fantastic opportunity for students and staff. We want to raise their aspirations and self-esteem while equipping them with practical skills they can call on when they leave school.
“Working with older volunteers also creates a real sense of teamwork and helps establish social connections.
“We see first-hand the confidence it can give children when they’re provided with an opportunity to try their hand at something new and outside of a classroom environment.”
The project, entitled Growing, By Growing, is being coordinated by our associate Dani Giddins with weekly sessions led by the charity’s team of artists.
She said: “Supporting older people to become active volunteers creates a sense of worth and purpose and promotes independence while allowing for some great skill sharing between different ages.
“It’s great to see the group develop each week, learning from one another and working together.”
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