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City funds project to help children boost their wellbeing

  • June 11, 2024
  • 2 min read
City funds project to help children boost their wellbeing

The City of London Corporation funds a project that has helped children from disadvantaged backgrounds take part in outdoor activities designed to boost their wellbeing. Known as the New Leaf Project, it supports London’s schoolchildren, nurturing their well-being, creativity, and confidence during school holidays.

Children from the ages of five to 16 can experience a wealth of enriching activities, held at the Barbican Library and Hampstead Heath. These range from shared lunches by campfires at Hampstead Heath to participating in mindful movement and creating stories inspired by nature.

Focusing on children facing challenges such as poverty, disability, or caring responsibilities, the project extends cultural opportunities to those who may not otherwise access them during the school holidays.

As part of the scheme, two new pond platforms have been built at Hampstead Heath’s teaching gardens. This addition offers young people the chance to immerse themselves in hands-on learning and develop transferable skills such as communication, teamwork, creativity, and confidence.

This initiative falls under the £400,000 Natural Environment Learning programme funded by the City of London Corporation. Annually, the programme helps 40,000 youngsters connect with nature, enhance their wellbeing, and develop their knowledge and skills.

Educational workshops run by the City Corporation’s Natural Environment Learning Team take place acrossHampstead HeathEpping Forest, and West Ham Park, reaching 40,000 young people a year.

Over 11,000 acres of open space across London and southeast England are protected by the City Corporation, including Epping Forest and Burnham Beeches, as well as over 180 smaller sites in the Square Mile. These green spaces, many of which are charitable trusts, are operated at little or no cost to the communities they serve. They encompass important wildlife habitats, Special Areas of Conservation, Sites of Special Scientific Interest, and National Nature Reserves, and are safeguarded from development by special legislation.

Additionally, the City Corporation sponsors 10 high-performing academies across Hackney, Islington, Newham, and Southwark through the City of London Academies Trust.

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