Connecting with nature is one of the ways we can improve our hauora (wellbeing), and a new rangatahi-led video series aims to help spread this message.
A recent wellbeing project, developed in collaboration with rangatahi Māori, aims to help rangatahi understand how a connection to nature can help in their everyday lives.
“We asked tauira (students) from our Manaaki Tāpoi programme, to create a series of simple activities and videos to share that are designed to provide a wellbeing boost for rangatahi,” says Bree Arnott from Whenua Iti Outdoors, an organisation that encourages young people into the outdoors and delivers experiential learning to inspire positive change.
The video series touches on a range of activities and topics, including taiaha, exercise, sit spots and self-talk, and shows rangatahi how they can help build a connection to nature, de-stress, and improve their sense of wellbeing.
An accompanying suite of Wellbeing Activity Sheets, designed in collaboration with the rangatahi, sit alongside the videos.
Other resources developed by Whenua Iti Outdoors include a series of fun ‘nature connection’ activities that aim to help tamariki (aged 7-14 years) connect to nature.
“These resources have been developed in line with existing wellbeing frameworks used in education settings, including Te Whare Tapa Whā and ‘5 ways to Wellbeing’,” says Bree.
“The activities can be used either at home or in the classroom, and come with teacher guides.”
The rangatahi involved in the video development project were supported by the team at Whenua Iti Outdoors, including one of their lead kauapapa Māori kaiako and a clinical psychologist, and funding for the project came from the Ministry of Health.
The videos and other resources are available on the Whenua Iti Outdoors website: https://www.whenuaiti.org.nz/wellbeing-activities/