Nature offers many opportunities to support children and young people in their personal development. Together with youth welfare services, youth welfare offices, schools and forestry training centres, Forst BW Kreisforstamt Schwarzwald-Baar-Kreis offers adventure education programmes in the Rohrhardsberg area. In particular, children and young people from difficult social backgrounds should benefit from the joint activities in nature.
Groups of children and young people come together over several days to carry out measures for the care and preservation of the forest and the animals. Living together in simple huts or tents and practical work in the forest require social cohesion of the group. „If a tree is felled or a bog-barrier (designed to aid in re-wetting drained bogs) is built, every one has got to lend a hand. The young people must be able to talk to each other and rely on each other“, forester Johannes von Stemm explains. „Everyone has his task – for example making sure that the tools used are completely back in their places by evening.“ In this way the young people learn to take responsibility - both for the group and for nature.
Guided by experts, they build pasture fences, keep biotop areas open and free the forest from rubbish. At the end oft the day, the young people see what they have achieved for nature and society. These experiences of success gives them new self-confidence, so that they can cope better with their often difficult everyday lives. The programme depends on the interests, skills and age of the participants. For children and adolecents who speak very little to no German the forest turns into a language class through their joint activities. Participants with a disability are also welcome. The experience gained from the project will be passed on in the form of further training courses and lectures.