Nearly Wild Exploration was founded by Steve and Irene Evison, following many years working in environmental and community development work. Their expertise is built on practical experience in the UK and extended periods working overseas including Alaska and Tanzania. Also, since 2010, they have owned and managed a smallholding and eco-location on the England-Wales border. In 1997, they established and have successfully run a ‘living geography’ consultancy, Resources for Change, which continues to work around the UK and internationally. More recently they set up Nearly Wild Camping, which is a co-op that aims to establish a network of wild camping locations across Britain and overseas, enabling people of all backgrounds to leave the boundaries of traditional campsites behind and to discover their own bit of wild whilst learning from local hosts about ‘their’ countryside and landscape.
Tom Endacott is Nearly Wild Exploration’s IT whizz, who has set up the website and keeps us up and running in the virtual world. Tom is also a keen Nearly Wild Explorer himself, his current project is renovating a sailing boat for future solo and shared coastal and marine explorations.
We also have a wider network of Nearly Wild Ambassadors, people from a wide variety of interests and places who all believe in the value of connecting with and exploring the natural world. They are feeding into our selection of blogs and videos, helping us to broaden the information, ideas and experiences we can share about exploring the natural world.
SO WHAT IS Nearly Wild Exploration?
We live on a fascinating planet, where we have shaped nature and it has shaped us. We believe that individuals, families, businesses and others that embrace this build their chances for well-being, success and happiness.
Our vision is to build nature back into people’s everyday lives, strengthening the connections between people and the natural world.
Nearly Wild Exploration is here to bring together the people who want to connect with and explore the natural world (we’re calling them Explorers) and the people who work to provide opportunities for exploring it (we’re calling them Providers).
Nearly Wild Exploration is there to help people find stuff, so that it’s easier to explore the natural world. And, it enables people to share knowledge, so that people get more out of their explorations.
To help people find stuff, the Nearly Wild Exploration portal hosts three different directories: events and activities that enable people to get out and explore the natural world; businesses and organisations whose work is focussed on the natural world and enabling people to explore the natural world; places and locations where people can get out and explore the natural world. Each directory is, each searchable by map, keyword or name. Listings shown in green will tend to be more detailed, and have been put up by the owner or person responsible. Listings shown in orange will be quite brief, having been put up by the Nearly Wild Exploration team or Ambassadors, using publicly available information.
To enable people to share knowledge, the Nearly Wild Exploration website provides a continually updated set of blogs, as well as videos. In 2019, we will be opening up membership, which will increase the ways to learn and share knowledge; members will be able to access free downloads, get discounts on training and workshops, and be invited to socials to meet other Explorers and Providers.
THE THINKING UNDERLYING Nearly Wild Exploration
We’re thinking about people and nature in the widest sense, such as mountain biking in heritage landscapes, canoeing with wildlife; learning eco-technologies; building with recycled materials; learning country crafts and how they shaped the countryside; getting out adventuring and travel; finding out how to identify the birds in your garden or the plants in your local country park….. anything and everything about nature …. near and far, urban and rural, wild and not so wild.… .
We want to be able to support people on a journey of exploration of the natural world around them, whether very local to home and as part of their everyday lives, or whether something much further afield and very different to their usual experiences. Through Nearly Wild Exploration , we are providing a directories that show just how much is out there for them, where it is, and what exactly is on offer. But the information is only part of the picture; we are also offering information and services directly that we hope will help people in their journey of exploration of the natural world in other ways, such as personal development training based on ecological principles.
At the same time, we want to be able to support and promote the individuals, businesses and organisations which are out there doing great things to provide experiences, activities, products and services related to the natural world. First and foremost, this support and promotion is about providing a means to publicise what they are doing, so that even more people know about them and buy or use their services – this is the Nearly Wild Exploration directories. We know how important it is for these providers to be able to be commercially viable if they are to continue their work. But there’s more to it than the publicity alone, so Nearly Wild Exploration is also there to offer other forms of support, so that we contribute to strengthening the sector as a whole, and also individual businesses and organisations.
WHY CALL IT Nearly Wild Exploration?
We live in a fascinating world, and whilst we may not realise it, everything links back to nature. People are part of the natural world and it is part of us. We have changed the natural world and it has changed us. In truth we are part of the ecological system and nothing is really truly ‘wild’ or ‘natural’, it is in fact semi-natural or, as we like to call it, Nearly Wild.