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Where wild things grow: Friluftsterapi as a preventative, health promoting, and sustainable method for children with neurodivergence in school, health care, family and leisure settings in Southern Norway

Dr Stephan Natynczuk

Spare Krab, UK

My academic background taught me to think holistically about connections in complex systems. I went on to encourage young people into scientific research before working with youth in crisis through experiential education outdoors, then to working therapeutically outdoors. My research interests include professionalism and ethics in Adventure Therapy, Solution Focused Practice Outdoors, and practice and practitioner wisdom.

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An Exploration of Practitioner Identity

Following on from the Adventure Mind conference in the UK we created a directory with Belinda Kirk (Adventure Mind) to identify practitioners from diverse occupations offering mental health services outdoors. We have been asking practitioners to identify their outdoor and therapeutic competence so that we can map their “zone of practice” using the Outdoor Mental Health Interventions Model (Richards et al., 2023). We are curious to see the correlation between self-identified occupation and perceived competence in outdoor therapeutic practice, and how clients and aspirant practitioners select the service they require. This study aims to grow awareness of outdoor therapeutic practices and ensure that those who are running it are safe, and qualified and provide the quality that service users deserve.

Where wild things grow: Friluftsterapi as a preventative, health promoting, and sustainable method for children with neurodivergence in school, health care, family and leisure settings in Southern Norway

Being at our best: practitioner and practice wisdom in Adventure Therapy 

This session is about the values we bring to our prosocial work outdoors and especially with adventure, and the values we draw on to be our best on behalf of our co-adventurers. Distinctions between practice wisdom and practitioner wisdom will be explored to help us identify what makes the biggest difference to the effectiveness of our work, especially with regard to working with clients who are changing the ecology of their existing social behaviour. 

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