Our story began…
in 2016 in response to the environmental crisis. We believe that those who have a relationship with their environment will be more likely to protect it. We also believe that children deserve the right to a wild and free childhood where learning is self-directed, mentor-facilitated and takes place in an organic environment-their backyard.
In a grassroots initiative, we began utilizing a classroom without walls, the Santa Monica Mountains, and local beaches and wetlands to engage our community with the natural would through Nature Immersion Programming and Family Adventures. These programs increase the impact of environmental stewardship practices within communities by providing all children and families with a deeper nature connection, increased access to meaningful outdoor experiences, and qualified mentorship.
Our organization has nearly doubled in size each year since its inception in 2016 and has a retention rate of over 90% of the families and children who attend our programs. Children and families who have attended our programs have shown a positive increase in their connectedness to nature, health and wellbeing, and their engagement in environmental stewardship practices and conservation efforts both in homes, local communities, and in wild spaces.
“This is what I want for my sons: freedom. Not just physical freedom, but intellectual and emotional freedom from the formulaic learning that prevails in our schools. I want for them the freedom to immerse themselves in the fields and forest that surround our home, to wander aimlessly or with purpose. I want for them the freedom to develop at whatever pace is etched into their DNA, not the pace dictated by an institution looking to meet the benchmarks that will in part determine its funding. I want them to be free to love learning for its own sake, the way that all children love learning for its own sake when it is not forced on them or attached to reward. I want them to remain free of social pressures to look, act, or think any way but that which feels most natural to them.
I want for them the freedom to be children. And no one can teach them how to do that.”
- Ben Hewitt Outside Magazine: We Don’t Need No Education