Forest Festival launches wellbeing volunteering programme

an old lady tree giant

A new Green and Active Heroes volunteering scheme is launching as part of this summer’s Forest Festival. The campaign, being run by Bracknell Forest Council in partnership with Involve Community Service, will encourage people to get outdoors and discover the wellbeing benefits of being closer to nature.

The Forest Festival will see the return of last year’s popular Bracknell Forest Giants, highlighting the health and wellbeing benefits of getting outdoors and the importance of green space conservation. The festival, running between 24 August and 4 September at The Lexicon in Bracknell, will be an immersive family event featuring magnificent tree giants, story-telling and educational entertainers.

With forest and green spaces making up almost 40% of Bracknell Forest’s landscape, it is an invaluable community asset. The aim of the volunteering campaign is not only for people to work together to create cleaner green spaces with improved biodiversity, but also to discover the positive effects of undertaking physical activity in some of our prettiest green spaces.

The centrepiece of the festival will be The Forest Guardian area.  Here, in addition to people being able to sign up to volunteering under the new Green and Active Heroes scheme, children will also be encouraged to make their own conservation and wellbeing pledges under the attentive eye of the new Bracknell Forest Guardian, 2-metre-tall tree giant, Elderma.

Stephen Chown, Head of Parks and Countryside at Bracknell Forest Council, said:

“The forest and green spaces within the borough are a fundamental part of what makes Bracknell Forest such a special place to live and work.

“The Forest Festival at The Lexicon, featuring the Forest Guardian programme, will remind people just how easy it is to access these spaces and inspire different ways for the local community to get involved.”

Phil Bell, Chief Executive Officer at Involve, said:

“Volunteering can enrich people’s lives on a social, mental and physical level. By combining this with working in outdoor spaces, we are seeking to support the efforts of the local rangers and other council staff by undertaking environmental activity that will enhance the spaces in which we live.”