Storyteller Nature Play Day
WYP + Storyteller
Wilderness Youth Project and Storyteller Children’s Center have partnered for many years. Storyteller is a Santa Barbara based therapeutic preschool providing high-quality early childhood education for children facing adverse challenges in Santa Barbara County and comprehensive support services for their families.
Through WYP’s Bridge to Nature program, WYP provides once-a-week programming to students at Storyteller for no cost to the participants or the school thanks to the generous support of our WYP community. We also partner throughout the year for camping and nature-based events and provide scholarships and transportation for Storyteller students to attend WYP summer camps.
6th Annual Campout & Nature Play Day
WYP and Storyteller Children’s Center teamed up once again for a 6th annual campout and Nature Play Day earlier this spring at Sage Hill campground on the Santa Ynez River. There were around 50 participants and staff and about half of the participants were under the age of 18, many of them under the age of six years old!
WYP and Storyteller Children’s Center staff camped out on Friday and Saturday nights. Families enrolled at Storyteller were invited to join for a day of drop-in events where WYP staff set up different stations of activities that were fun and educational for children and adults alike.
The activities included:
- Carving/Knife skills
- Fire by Friction
- Sewing felt pouches
- Gourd bowls
- River Exploration & Games
“I wanted to share our story. My mother and siblings hadn't originally planned on going to camp but at the last minute were able to make it. My siblings had a wonderful time participating in the activities on Saturday. My brother sewed a small pouch and my sister sewed the whole afternoon to finish a bear for my mom for Mother's Day. My brother also enjoyed carving the stick with Ulises and then using the bow and arrow.”
Wilderness Youth Project and Storyteller Children’s Center are committed to bringing all program elements to participants in a bilingual environment so that everyone can be fully engaged. In a similar vein, tents, sleeping pads, bags, and three meals a day were provided to staff, with the goal of everyone being warm, comfortable, and well-fed at the campground.
My experience was wonderful, it was my second time camping and all you made it easy and fun, I was able to connect with nature and wonderful people. I love the way you interact with the children. I could see your passion and your willingness to deliver a message of love and friendship among others. The food was amazing and I want to thank everybody who shared the delicious dishes. Even the experience with the tarantula was great.
Adriana is a teacher at Storyteller and when she arrived at the camp out she shared that she was feeling most nervous about “spiders!” WYP staff assured her that the ones around here aren’t likely to be poisonous.
Of course, Adriana almost immediately found a “HUGE AND FURRY SPIDER” (tarantula). The group was able to safely and respectfully admire the beautiful creature and conquer fears together.
You can create a Bridge to Nature too!
This partnership is made possible through community support. Wilderness Youth Project’s Bridge to Nature programs serve our community’s low-income students and meet them where they already are, at our partner organization sites and at schools, like Storyteller Children’s Center. From preschool through teen years, we meet at community centers, low-income housing and schools, and partner youth service agencies. These programs, paired with the opportunities to join summer camps, allow participants to maintain consistent and reliable connections with our mentors. You can support this WYP program by making a donation online today or contacting us to learn more.
Join us at the next community FREE Nature Play Day on October 1, 2022
Bring your family to enjoy a Saturday outside for a FREE Nature Play Day on Saturday, October 1 from 10-1 at Oak Park with staff and friends of Wilderness Youth Project, Storyteller Children's Center, and The Oaks Parent-Child Workshop at Oak Park.
We will be hosting engaging activities and facilitating earth-based skills such as fiber arts, fire by friction, and earth paints. This event is for all ages, and anyone is welcome so feel encouraged to invite your friends. Drop by anytime and spend your morning with us outdoors! Download the flyer here.
If this event has passed, please head over to Community Events to see what events we have on the calendar.