Embrace your wild side

HAVE you done anything wild lately? No, not doing animal impressions – I mean going outside and getting closer to nature.

We’ve received lots of feedback from readers who say they enjoy the nature articles in the News & Mail. Many have been connecting more with the natural world during the COVID-19 lockdown, but we can all aim to “go wild” in June.

Take up the challenge to build a bug hotel like this during June

Research proves contact with nature is good for our mental and physical wellbeing. With that in mind, Surrey Wildlife Trust is urging people of all ages to get take part in 30 Days Wild, a national nature challenge for all ages. It has lots of ideas to help you do something wild outside every day for a whole month.

Now in its sixth year, 30 Days Wild this year is arguably more important than ever. With hundreds of ways to connect to wildlife and nature close to home, it promises to give those who take part a greater sense of health and happiness during these strange times.

The trust’s Jo Foat says its new research found that 83% of people said reducing stress and anxiety was the number one benefit of being outside in nature. “Three quarters said being outdoors helped them to feel healthier,” she said. “And 72% said it made them happier, while over half of respondents welcomed the fact that nature is free.”

Find out how to feed hedgehogs by taking part in the 30 Days Wild challenge

You can sign up now for 30 Days Wild, ready to start on Monday 1 June., at www.surreywildlifetrust.org/30dayswild. It’s for everyone, wherever you live and whatever your age.

This year, all the resources are available exclusively online. Downloadable packs include activities for families, schools and even care homes. You can get closer to nature in the way that suits you best.

There’s a colourful wallchart, a wild bingo game, a colour-in window poster and a passport logbook with ideas to record wonderful wild actions. These include crafting with nature, going plastic-free for a day, and helping bugs, bees and butterflies in gardens.

If you sign up you will receive ideas from The Wildlife Trusts throughout June.

Charlotte Magowan from Surrey Wildlife Trust added: “Being outside and connecting with nature is so important for us all mentally and physically. Nature can be healing and make us realise just how important it is for us to give it a helping hand.

“Every small action can help reverse nature’s decline. Whether you put food out for hedgehogs, build a bug hotel or sow wildflowers in your garden, everyone can play a part.”

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About the Author: Editorial Team