Nature PEI

June Nature PEI Meeting — Wild Child PEI with Hannah Gehrels


Join Nature PEI for their next monthly meeting on Tuesday, June 6th at 7:30 pm in Charlottetown. The meeting will feature guest speaker, Hannah Gehrels, PEI Wild Child Projects Coordinator with the Sierra Club Canada Foundation’s Wild Child Program. Hannah will be sharing some of their most treasured and inspiring moments from their work to connect Island children and families back to nature.

Hannah hails from Thunder Bay, Ontario. They hold a BSc in Biology from Simon Fraser University in British Columbia and an MSc in Biology from UPEI, where their research focused on invasive green crabs. Hannah has an extensive background in delivering nature- and science-focused education programs, having worked as a Marine Sciences Educator at Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre on Vancouver Island, and been a Coordinator of the Let’s Talk Science Program at UPEI. Hannah founded the PEI Wild Child Forest School Program in 2017 and has grown the program in the years since then.

‘Wild Child’ is a recreational Forest and Nature School program of the Sierra Club Canada Foundation. There are Wild Child programs active in three provinces across Canada, including Alberta, Nova Scotia, and PEI. The PEI Wild Child Program was established in 2017 with the mission to provide child-led, play-based learning through repeated exposure to nature. helping to foster a lasting relationship with the natural world. Since starting in PEI, the Wild Child Program has expanded to offer programming for 3-15-year olds through afterschool programs, preschool programs, PD day programs, family programs, programs for homeschoolers, and summer day camps.

“I have learnt so much about myself, children, what it means to be inclusive while running this program”, says Hannah Gehrels, PEI Wild Child Projects Coordinator, “and I have also deepened my understanding, trust, and relationship with the natural world. The land always provides the teachings, the joy, the challenges, and it is an absolute privilege to be in the position to connect children to the natural world through play and watch how their attitudes, behaviours, and comfort level being outside transforms over time.”

The meeting starts at 7:30pm at Beaconsfield Carriage House, corner of West and Kent St., in Charlottetown. Admission is free and all are welcome to attend!

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