Understand your natural world with the Field Studies Council

12 July 2018

We’ve worked with the Field Studies Council (FSC) for almost a year now, sharing a vision for a greener Britain. They believe, much as we do, that the more we understand about the world around us, the more we’re inclined to protect its diversity and beauty. As our partner of the month, we asked them about their work to inspire people’s interest in the world we inhabit.   

Our relationship with the natural world – by FSC

The Field Studies Council is an environmental education charity that believes that hands-on learning experiences in the natural world inspire, motivate, deepen knowledge and broaden horizons.

We recognise that one of the key issues we face in creating a sustainable future is that of a population disconnected from nature.  Media headlines such as ‘Three quarters of UK children spend less time outdoors than prison inmates’ (The Guardian) and ‘Millions of Brits spend less than half an hour outside each day’ (Express) regularly appear in our news feeds, touching on our nature deficit epidemic.

We have social media, video games and WhatsApp to fill our time now, but is it beneficial to spend so little time connecting with nature? Rocketing mental health problems in the UK population (especially in the young), and an increasing disconnection between our actions and their impact on the natural world that sustains us, suggest not.

There’s a considerable body of evidence that shows being close to and spending more time in nature can be a genuine way to improve our wellbeing and our actions toward the environment – both of which we’re committed to promote through our work.

At FSC we aim to give people a first-hand experience in the outdoors. Many of these experiences will be at one of our network of UK field centres, located in some of the most inspiring landscapes of the UK.

Many of our courses have an academic focus, supporting students with fieldwork and exam preparation – but they also ensure participants connect with their surroundings through immersive experiences in the outdoors. All our courses involve going out into, exploring and being curious about the diverse and awe-inspiring local environments that surround us.  Such experiences also lead to other positive benefits for our learners such as building confidence, collaborative abilities and resilience. 

For adults and families our experiences range from family holidays that are steeped in fun and connective activities in the natural world through to specialist learning about the many plant and animal species with which we cohabit these islands – all involving that precious time in and with nature.

The next step for FSC is exploring opportunities more directly linked to wellbeing, with some of our centres offering weekend escapes combining time outside with mindfulness, yoga or general fitness, as we continue with our commitment to offering first-hand experiences in the environment.

Find out more about FSC courses by visiting their website, where you’ll find loads of experiences that bring the outdoor environment to life. And make a difference to the world around you simply by switching to Britain’s greenest energy company. It’s one of the biggest single things you can do to reduce your carbon footprint and we’ll donate up to £50 to FSC when you do.

 

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