We are extremely excited to announce our partnership with The Outdoor Guide Foundation by supporting its innovative ‘Waterproofs & Wellies’ campaign! Together, we aim to provide essential outdoor gear to young children, helping them to fully embrace the wonders of the great outdoors as part of their daily school activities…
The Outdoor Guide Foundation (TOGF) is the charitable arm of The Outdoor Guide, a free walking resource started by well-known TV Presenter and walking guru Julia Bradbury, and her sister Gina Bradbury Fox. During lockdown, after hearing the shock facts that almost a third of children in the UK live in poverty with little or no money to buy a waterproof coat and a pair of wellies, combined with a lack of wet weather kit in state primary schools, Julia and Gina decided to launch TOGF, which is dedicated to making the outdoors more accessible for children.
“We are in the middle of a physical and mental health crisis. Nine children in every state-funded class of 30 live below the poverty line, and not having the right kit is a real barrier to many children enjoying the benefits of getting outdoors. The Waterproofs & Wellies campaign ensures children can have the opportunity to explore, learn and play outside, regardless of the weather conditions, by equipping schools with the basics – a waterproof jacket, over-trousers and wellies. Our goal, with the support from businesses like Nikwax, is to gift 10 sets of waterproofs and wellies to every state primary school in the UK – all 20,000 of them!” Gina Bradbury Fox.
Nikwax is thrilled to have provided ten primary schools* in the southeast of England, close to our Wadhurst HQ, with ten sets of waterproofs and wellies each. Our commitment to maximising enjoyment of the great outdoors with minimal environmental impact, aligns perfectly with the campaign’s ethos, which is that every child should have the opportunity to connect with nature, the gains of which are well documented and numerous:
- Educational benefits
- Developing social interaction and empathy
- Enhancing wellbeing
- Reducing anger, stress, and anxiety
- Improving community engagement
- Increasing physical fitness
We have supported children and schools before; funding the construction of outdoor classrooms that double as hides for watching wildlife, and working with the ‘Earth Restoration Service’ charity on their School Tree Nurseries programme, which provides small-scale trees to schools for children to care for whilst learning about the vital role trees play in our eco system. On gaining maturity, the trees are out-planted in the schools’ local communities to form new woodlands, helping both the children and the local environment to flourish. Read more here.
As well as Nikwax, the Waterproofs & Wellies campaign has attracted well-known supporters, including Tracey Crouch, Conservative MP for Chatham and Aylesford, who is a long-time advocate of the health benefits of outdoor education and physical activity (she is an FA-qualified football coach. Also, popular children’s TV Presenter Gemma Hunt, who, as campaign ambassador, personally visited Luton Primary School in Chatham to present them with their waterproofs and wellies…
“I am thrilled to support the Waterproofs & Wellies campaign, as it aligns perfectly with my commitment to promoting healthy and active lifestyles among children. Access to the outdoors is essential for their physical and mental wellbeing, and Nikwax’s generous support will make a real difference.” Tracey Crouch MP.
“The Waterproofs & Wellies campaign gives children the invaluable tools they need to have fun and learn outdoors safely and comfortably. To date, we have delivered 3000 kits to schools across the UK and raised more than £90,000! Our goal is to raise £5 million.” Gemma Hunt.
By supplying ten local schools with the basics for jumping in puddles, Nikwax is proud to be helping TOGF to encourage children to get outdoors and enjoy nature in comfort. You can make your own donation to the Waterproofs & Wellies campaign here.