Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust 'concerned' by report showing children have reduced access to nature
A MAJOR new study by the RSPB which reveals that only 10 per cent of children regularly play outside compared to 40 per cent in 1970 has been met with concern by Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust.
According to the RSPB's report, only 21 per cent of children in the UK have a level of connection to nature that can be considered ‘realistic and achievable’ for all youngsters.
Published earlier this month, the study found that children living in urban areas had a significantly lower connection to nature than youngsters living in rural parts of the country.
Reacting to the report’s findings, Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust said it had long been concerned by a ‘growing trend’ of children having reduced access to the natural world.
Dr Gareth Parry, head of community programmes at the conservation organisation, said: “This study confirms something we have suspected for a long time; that children are increasingly missing out on the benefits of a childhood spent outdoors.”
“The Trust is committed to ensuring that children experience all the fun, education and adventure that nature has to offer.”
In direct response to the study, GWT said it was already looking at ways it could help to reverse the problem in Gloucestershire.
"Our children are not afforded the same amount of free play as we had as children; families are increasingly time-poor, there is a huge increase in screen time, and parental fears all act as barriers to enjoying the wild outdoors, said GWT’s marketing manager Emma Bradshaw.
“Children don't have the opportunity to climb trees and get muddy knees, but we want to put that right,” she added.
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