John Muir Award training and information
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John Muir Award e-bulletin May 2015

Dear <<First Name>>,

This e-bulletin contains the latest John Muir Award information along with activities, events and news from around the UK.





North East England




John Muir Award Appeal
Congratulations to Davids Lintern and Hine on completing C2C4K, an epic cross-Scotland journey – on land and water, over 7 of the UK’s 4000ft peaks, carrying packrafts, in the wintriest of May conditions. All in support of the John Muir Award Appeal. You can donate, and see more as their write-ups emerge via #C2C4K
We’ve recently welcomed testimonials for our work from Branching Out/Dundee Association for Mental Health, Phoenix Futures, Hidden Hebrides, Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park and Lake District National Park. Take a look, watch our Appeal film if you haven’t already, and please consider supporting the John Muir Award.

Extraordinary John Muir Award feat gets Muir family approval
Hannah Norton has spent at least 23 ‘wild’ minutes every day for the past year working towards her John Muir Conserver Award, a feat which has been recognised and celebrated by Robert Hanna, John Muir’s great-great-grandson. Read more here.
Proposals and Certificate Requests reminder
Spring is a busy time – please help us in a couple of easy ways:
  • Email us your Proposal Form at least 2 weeks before the start of your activity.
  • Email us your Certificate Request Form at least 2 weeks before you need your certificates. Check spelling of names, and include the summary breakdown of Awards requested. If copying and pasting please ensure it is in Word format with first name followed by surname. 
Forms can be downloaded from the Award website.
Conserve Audit
This year we’re also collecting Conserve activity data – what you did to care for wild places. Thanks for brilliant cooperation and contributions so far. Our favourite today: "Rebuilding stone steps in pond so hedgehogs don't drown".

John Muir Award Training dates
Leader Training Two-day residential courses give a thorough introduction to the John Muir Award.
  • 8-9 Sept, South Downs National Park
  • 26-27 Sept, Lake District National Park
  • 30-1 Sept, South Lanarkshire
  • 3-4 Oct, Peak District National Park
  • 7-8 Oct, Snowdonia National Park
John Muir Award in Schools These one-day courses are for teachers and others involved in classroom or community learning to find out how the John Muir Award can be integrated.
  • 14 July, Darley Barn, Derby, £40
  • 6 Nov, John Muir Trust Wildspace, Pitlochry, £40
For more information including details of how to book click here.
Gwyllt am Gymru (Wild about Wales)
From the rugged peaks of Snowdonia to its spectacular coastline, Wales is a land of natural and cultural riches - not to mention endless scope for adventure.  Read more about the John Muir Award’s engagement in Wales, in this recent John Muir Trust Spring Journal Article.

A land teeming with wildlife
This John Muir Trust article published recently in the Herald examines John Muir’s legacy 177 years after his birth.

Greater London National Park City
Help London to become the world’s first National Park City. The John Muir Trust has contributed to its crowdfunding project – take a look and consider supporting it. On 3 June a motion for the Greater London Authority to support these efforts will be put to the London Assembly. You can find out more here.

John Muir, Earth - Planet, Universe – attitude shift regarding nature
A recent study found that the John Muir, Earth - Planet, Universe  Graphic Novel (free to download) has increased students’ awareness of the value of the natural world. Read more in our news article.

It's Our World extended to 20 November
Arts and sustainability initiative It's Our World continues to invite gallery contributions. Over 1000 were made last week! Make it part of your John Muir Award sharing.

Random Acts of Wildness - 30 Days Wild with the Wildlife Trusts.
Make room for nature this June – sign up for the #30DaysWild challenge as part of a John Muir Award. Do something wild every day for the month. Get a pack full of ideas of things to do near where you live.

New Plant Tracker app
Invasive non-native plant species are a threat to native wildlife in the UK. They spread quickly and can affect the health of places and people. As part of your John Muir Award you can help tackle this problem by tracking them down with a new improved version of the Plant Tracker app.

OPAL Citizen Science surveys now UK wide
To mark the official UK-wide launch, the OPAL team has revised and updated their national surveys. The six different surveys allow people of all ages to contribute to scientific research in their local area on everything from invasive species to environmental quality.

National School Grounds Week: Polli:Nation – 8-12 June
Polli:Nation supports schools to protect the future of our bee population. Register for access to "Polli:Nation" related resources.
Cherishing Churchyards Week 6-14 June
Churchyards often contain a rich diversity of species, veteran trees, flower-rich meadowland and mosses, ferns and lichens. They are often in the heart of the community and can be a great resource for inspiration and learning.
Big Butterfly Count – 17 July-9 August
A nationwide survey helping to assess the health of our environment. Simply count butterflies for 15 minutes during bright (preferably sunny) weather. Records are welcome from anywhere: from parks, school grounds and gardens, to fields and forests.
Empty Classroom Day - 19 June
Join schools and organisations from across the UK and spend a lesson learning outside the classroom.
Grow Wild Summer Roadshow
Grow Wild inspires people to transform local spaces, by sowing, growing and enjoying native wild flowers. The roadshow is touring the UK until August. Click here to find a venue near you.


NEW Simple Pleasures, Easily Found
Scottish Natural Heritage has re-launched its Simple Pleasures campaign by focusing on recording outside fun in photos. A new short Photo Walks film inspires teachers and group leaders to get creative with their groups.  An easy to use instruction booklet shows how to run your own photo walk project.

Looking for help with Outdoor Learning?
The Scottish Environment & Forestry Directorate has created the Outdoor Learning Directory to bring together a wealth of outdoor learning resources, funding, places, training and contacts – in one handy place.

Access to Education Fund – Deadline 19 June
Phase 2 of the Scottish Government’s Access to Education Fund is now open with £1.5m of funding available to schools to support learners from disadvantaged backgrounds to improve attainment. A great opportunity to raise funds for Outdoor Learning projects as a way of engaging pupils and boosting learning.  

Funding for travel to Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park
Traveling can be expensive, so to help John Muir Award groups from all backgrounds experience wild places, Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park offers an Educational Travel Grant. This can cover up to 75% of total transport costs, up to a maximum £200.

Edinburgh Living Landscape:  Nature in your neighbourhood
The Edinburgh Living Landscape is a partnership project that will create, restore and connect green areas to make attractive and biodiverse landscapes. Award groups are invited to help care for living landscape features near you or to put forward your own wild area to be included. See their interactive map.

Peak District National Park increases support for the John Muir Award
Pete Feetham is the new part-time Development Officer with the Learning and Discovery Team.  Pete will develop closer links with the John Muir Award team as well as create a Peak District Curriculum to support educational visits. To see how a visit to the Peak District could contribute to a John Muir Award please contact:

John Muir Award and Circle of Life summer camp programmes
Circle of Life Rediscovery, Sussex, offers inspiring nature-based activity days for schools, families and individuals including unique residential experiences. This year’s summer camps for 11 to 17 year olds offer all participants the opportunity to gain a John Muir Award.


Car-free – just the ticket
Taking inspiration from John Muir’s 1000 mile journey on foot in 1867, the GoLakes Travel team practised what they preached in a 1000-mile car-free Lake District adventure to achieve their John Muir Awards. The team blogged about an amazing variety of journeys on foot, by bike, bus, train, horse, boat and even swimming! And to share their adventures they mapped these journeys on a Pinterest board.


Get involved around the River Tees
River Tees Rediscovered is a vibrant Landscape Partnership, providing an opportunity to conserve local natural heritage. Volunteers have already made over 200 birdfeeders and bird boxes and planted hundreds of bulbs and seeds. More events are scheduled this year - see how you can get involved.

Volunteer Placements in Northumberland
Northumberland National Park is looking for young people (16-25) for autumn Volunteer Placements (Sept to Nov).  It’s a great chance to sample working life with the Ranger team and complete a John Muir Award.


FREE Outdoor Learning training for Teachers in Wales, 8 July
The Real World Learning Cymru Partnership is hosting a FREE Teacher Training event at FSC Margam Park, Port Talbot.  The event offers teachers an opportunity to work with leading Outdoor and Environmental NGOs to explore ideas to take learning outside the classroom. To find out more and book a place, contact

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