The Wilderness Foundation is a socio environmental charity founded in 1976 by the international conservationist Dr Ian Player DMS, renowned for saving the white rhino, and the late Sir Laurens van der Post, writer, explorer and philosopher.
At the heart of the global wilderness community for 40 years, the Wilderness Foundation UK protects wilderness and green spaces while meeting the needs of local communities. Based in rural Essex the Foundation aims, with the help of outreach programmes, to reconnect young people, especially struggling urban youth, and help them find a direction through facilitated therapeutic outdoor wilderness trails and one-to-one mentoring.
Conservation is also at the heart of the Foundation. One such programme is Imbewu Scotland-- a week long trail in the most remote parts of Scotland, partnered by Scottish Land & Estates, and a range of estate owners and staff, to improve social and physical well-being and inspire young Scots to consider opportunities of rural employment and appreciation of their natural heritage.
The Foundation also runs the award winning Chatham Green project-a conservation and education initiative on 400 acres of farmland in the heart of Essex. Using the strength of learning outside the classroom and hands on experience to bring lessons to life, the project taps into key curriculum subjects in an experiential, hands-on and memorable way. It aims to teach young people greater awareness of the balance needed between food, farming and nature.