Here is just a selection of the praise received from our clients, volunteers and partners…
Millfields Primary School:”The children in Key Stage 2 at Millfields Primary School have benefitted from the expertise of John Wills on many occasions over the last few years. A class of Year 5 children spent the day in Wivenhoe Woods and learnt how to build shelters, make bread on an open fire, fillet fish and make soap out of horse chestnut leaves. It was an amazing day and all the children learnt a great deal about survival techniques, important life skills, group cooperation and team work. Following the day, the children undertook activities back at school, based on their experiences. The children were really inspired by the day and wrote poetry, plays, films scripts, instructions, posters and adventure stories. One of the adventure stories was printed as a book and sold at school; it raised over £200 for school funds! We were fortunate enough to repeat this trip with our Year 6 children recently. We are already planning the follow up work we will carry out!
Thank you to John and Tim for their time and expertise”.
Colchester Community Bridge Builders: “Thank you on behalf of everyone for a fantastic 2 day venture, it was good to see our members enjoying themselves. The 2 day venture was a big boost for our members who for some had not left Clacton for a number of years and for others it gave the opportunity to experience mixing with others in an environment that made them feel at ease and gave an opportunity to a unique learning experience helping to enhance their self esteem and confidence.
It was a joy for us as staff to see the members of Pathway2 come together in an environment where they felt at ease. So often we find ourselves supporting them in situations where we are often problem solving. It was lovely to see the other side where everyone was enjoying themselves and for them to be away from their problems and anxiety for a while. The experience has helped them to see that there is more out there and that they can really grow with confidence and self esteem en the right opportunity.
Thank you so much John and please give our thanks to Ralph and all involved in making this a great 2 days!”
Client 60th family birthday party: “What a fantastic way to celebrate my 60th with my children and grandchildren on Mersea Island with the wonderful John Wills, Simon and Tim at Greenpath Ventures It might have been cold but that didn’t stop us putting up hammocks, lighting fires, watching the sheep and lambs and meeting Ginger and Pickles the two Saddleback pigs. This was so much better than putting the kids in some boring restaurant telling them to sit still and eat with their mouths closed!!“
Client: “I have thoroughly enjoyed our sessions with Greenpath Ventures, seeing the confidence grow in not only myself but my fellow group members. It’s a time and space when I forget about my mental health diagnosis and feel safe and supported to explore new skills. The praise when you get the task right (i.e hammock construction), all the time being aware that this is also a safe place to not get it right. The staff are patient, kind and humorous – it’s great to chat, eat and laugh together! My group and I look forward to these sessions with great excitement – the highlight of my month, and i have cancelled appointments just so I can make it. Each time I go i learn something new – both skills wise and within myself.” The Haven (diagnosis – BPD and Bi-polar)”
Senior Occupational Therapist, Therapies Team, North Essex Partnership Foundation NHS Trust: “Thank you so much for the bushcraft day. Inspite of the near freezing temperatures all the clients LOVED it and are keen to come on the next one. Your expertise and knowledge, together with your previous experience working in mental health, ensured that you engaged and sustained the interest of the group. You pitched it just right to keep the clients motivated, no mean feat considering the varying abilities and levels of functioning in the group. It was an opportunity for clients to develop their social skills, concentration, co-ordination, cognitive functioning, stamina, and it boosted their confidence and self esteem.”
Greenpath Venture Volunteer: “I have been a volunteer for just over a year, and have found that the opportunity has greatly increased my self confidence. Ventures have trained me to be a GNAS registered archery Leader and an airgun instructor. Through the experiences I’ve had as a volunteer, I have a greater sense of wellbeing and feel that this has helped to improved my self esteem. Being outside on Ivy Farm, and meeting and interacting with fellow volunteers/clients, has helped me to gain the experience I needed to get a job. I was unemployed for the first 6 months as a volunteer, and now have a part time post working with people with secondary care mental health conditions. GV has taught me many different skills, but most importantly, it has taught me about myself, and given me the opportunity to do something that I am very passionate and enthusiastic about.”