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About Wild Walks for Wellbeing: Wild Walks for Wellbeing is a successful, evolving group whose origins lie with an initially Bristol Active Life Project (BALP)-run group formed in 2010, subsequently run by MIND, and then between 2012 and spring 2014, managed by and based at Rethink in St Paul’s. Since then, the group has been autonomous, run by the current team of fully trained and certificated Walk Leaders, with support from Rethink, Walking For Health and Trinity Community Arts. Previously the walks were undertaken within the Greater Bristol area, with a high proportion of easy, accessible routes to suit all abilities. Whilst these still feature largely in our programmes, we have widened the scope to include areas further afield such as Bath, Wells, Glastonbury, Stanton Drew, Keynsham, Yatton, offering members the opportunity to experience a stimulating change of scene and exciting excursions. We also welcome collaborations with other organisations and have undertaken guided walks at sites managed by Avon Wildlife Trust.
Who the group is for: This group is specifically designed for those who have experienced mental health difficulties and is not open to the general public. Our members have accessed it through such organisations as MIND, Rethink, Second Step, as well as various NHS facilities. Therefore anyone under the care of these or similar establishments is welcome to attend with or without support workers.
What the group offers: We are a walking group, however roughly every 4 weeks we hold a Gardening Group in conjunction with a short inner city walk. This means that members of the group who are interested can return early to The Trinity Centre to work on the allotment there. This activity is led by appropriate Walk Leaders, who have horticultural knowledge.
Once a month we are also accompanied on the walk by either of the two ladies from The Trinity Centre who have volunteered to offer their expertise on green matters, this would obviously occur in areas with suitable vegetation.
Every six weeks we have what is termed an Introductory Taster Walk, this is supported by Rethink who provide one of their workers either to accompany interested individuals or to meet us at the end of the walk to discuss any issues and provide support and advice. The Taster Walks are also open to other organisations/departments to bring new walkers, although the Allotment group would also be potentially suitable. For more independent and fit individuals an introduction on an easier city walk would also be appropriate. We walk every Thursday, generally meeting around 1.15pm although this does vary. We also have two meeting places, the garden area of The Trinity Arts Centre and the Wesley Chapel in the city centre.