This programme is aimed at emerging young adults . It is aimed at those who feel the call of the wild or who enjoy learning new skills or are looking for something new!
Journey Home : A six month Creative Journey in Nature : Ancestral Skills, Forest Therapy ,Creative Practice.
Journey Home inspires participants to connect with nature and explore how we can find a sense of belonging and home in nature.This 9 month journey runs from Imbolc to Samhain and is designed to help participants to discover their gifts and develop these potentials. It aims to develop nature connection and learn skills , develop community, build confidence and resilience in the self and help participants develop the necessary skills of communication, leadership and discipline to prepare for the next steps as they move forward on life' s path. It will be a fun , exciting, empowering and transformative experience.
Inspired by nature participants will connect with their creativity through a variety of engagement practices designed to encourage participants to connect with their local landscape and discover their personal creative potentials.The programme will be designed around 9 themes inspired by nature which will foster a sense of place and belonging, help us to understand our connection as humans to nature , create community and empower young people to take positive action in their community. Each session weaves together creative practices, forest therapy, nature connection practices , ancestral skills and will focus on a different aspect of this creative journey using natural materials, based on the season, and interests of the group.
NATURE GUARDIANS AND MENTORING PROGRAMME :
Participants will also have the experience of stepping into the mentor role. Each year Kilkenny Forest School offersparticipants the opportunity to return as mentors on our Weavers and Warriors Programme and our Small Worlds Programme .
Participants will also be invited to act in two ecological restoration projects as part of their journey to becoming nature guardians . These include habitat management ( Himalayan Balsam ) and community seedsaving for the Acorn Project.
Shelter Building : Debris Shelters and hanging tarps.
Friction Fire and tinder :Making Fire with Bow Drills and firesteels.
JOURNEY : "Not All Who Wander are Lost"
New journeys often offer opportunities to learn new skills and grow from the experience of overcoming challenges.They also provide creative inspiration.Sometimes we have to go away to experience a sense of coming home. A number of journeys will be built into the programme to offer participants this experience. We will travel over land and water. This journeys will offer a number of opportunities for putting our new skills into practice. We will craft objects such as baskets , cordage and journey sticks which will serve us on our way.. We will also learn to navigate our way across the land with and without maps and compasses.
Journeys will include
- A river trip with fully qualified and experienced instructors
- A 18 km River Walk through the Nore Valley .
These journeys will mark significant thresholds on the programme and offer opportunities to mark a Rite of Passage. These journeys will be recorded and celebrated in beautiful ways. The rite of passage will be marked in a way significant to the group and celebrated with their community
Fires have long used by humans to honour homecomings and mark significant times and events. Over the six month programme , individuals will learn to create and tend fire and through this experience we will begin to discover what is is within ourselves that needs tending. We will discover the power of fire to transform, guide and warm us. The Rite of Passage will be marked by a personal fire ceremony . The Homecoming will be celebrated with community as participants create a wild feast over the fire for their families and community.
Participants will also have the experience of stepping into the mentor role. Each year Kilkenny Forest School offers past participants the opportunity to return as mentors on our Weavers and Warriors programme and our Small Worlds programme. Participants on the Journey Home programme will also be offered the opportunity to step into this role as a mentor on the fledgling programmes.
Participants will also be invited to act in two conservation programmes as part of their journey to becoming nature guardians. These may include invasive species management ( Himalayan Balsam ) and gathering Acorns for the Acorn Project.
Inspired by nature, Journey Home emerged in 2017 in response to a call from young people and parents expressing a desire for a deeper more immersive experience in nature.
Journey Home is a collaboration between nature guides Maura Brennan and Darach O Murchú. The programme is inspired by the story the landscape tells us through the turning of the seasons. It is motivated by a desire to share our nature connection , our stories and ancestral skills.
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