New Eco Skills training places will be taken up by a new intake of Natural England trainees in April. Applications for the available places for this sought-after, hands-on ecology experience are now closed and the final selection process is about to be completed with an open day for the short listed candidates.
The current group of Eco Skills trainees will be completing their time in the East Dartmoor National Nature Reserve this spring and, rounding off her training with Natural England, Emma Fancett has been enjoying a day in Pullabrook Woods with a group of students. Exeter College has long standing links with the team at the Nature Reserve and the students working in the woods this time are on an Apex course. Aged between 19 and 21 they are improving a wide range of life skills in preparation for finding work and are all aiming for a John Muir Award as a result of their efforts.
Emma will also use this leadership experience to complete her portfolio as a Forest School practitioner. While supervising the students to plant wild species of trees she described her ideas for the future. “I plan to continue to help local businesses work in a more sustainable way but, to keep life varied, I hope to include some time working with groups like this who want to improve wild areas of Dartmoor”.
The students returned to their minibus filled with enthusiasm from their day in the woods, saying how they thought it was important to spend time outdoors and look after the environment. It looked like everybody had the chance of leaving the woods with a smile on their face and a certificate to help them to take their next step in the world of ecology.
One of Emma’s final tasks on the Nature Reserve will be to run some woodland skills workshops at the Working Woodlands event on 20th March. Follow this link for details http://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/get-involved/events/20-march-2016-working-woodlands-at-bovey-valley/
by Matt Parkins