Award-Winning Accompanied Walks continue at Chiltern Open Air Museum

Award-Winning Accompanied Walks continue at Chiltern Open Air Museum

Chiltern Open Air Museum’s Accompanied Walks 2023 programme kicks off this April, running on Wednesdays and Fridays until October.

 

The project provides an opportunity for members of the community who need some encouragement and support, or have little or no opportunity, to venture outdoors and interact with other people. This year, the project aims to support adults experiencing social isolation, bereavement or who have additional support needs.

The project, which sits under the Social Prescribing umbrella, gives participants the opportunity to enjoy an hour’s walk around the Museum (or to be driven around in a golf buggy) and learn about the 37 heritage buildings, gardens, park and woodland, or simply just chat. Before returning home, walkers are offered refreshments, a chance for further conversation and are invited back for a return visit. Accompanied Walks are free of charge.

Accompanied Walkers benefit from a dose of ‘Vitamin green’ from being outdoors in a rural
environment; the security of being in a supervised setting (as opposed to a public park); and very importantly, a social interaction. The knock-on wellbeing benefits from the walks include an increase in confidence, a greater ability to manage existing health conditions, and a diversion from negative thoughts.

In recognition of the benefits gained by members of the community, the Museum was awarded
the ‘Best Local Social Prescribing Award 2022’ by the Social Prescribing Network and College of
Medicine.

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To date, the Museum has supported over 200 people through the project and feedback from the Accompanied Walks visitors has been 100% positive.

“The whole experience was refreshing and in these ‘troubled times’ a little bit of normality…the
wonders of being out with nature, good for body and soul!” Accompanied Walker.

Accompanied Walks are available until the end of October on Wednesdays and Fridays. The project is supported by The Sherling Charitable Trust.

For further information and to register for an Accompanied Walk, please contact Jacqui Gellman
at outreach@coam.org.uk or 07951 083 380.

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