Get Outside with Community program participants pause for a happy snappy during a game of soccer on Maria Island
The Get Outside with Community program is an innovative social inclusion project run in collaboration between the Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service (PWS) and Wildcare Inc. The program encompasses a number of excursions to Tasmanian reserves with people seeking asylum, people from a refugee background and with other culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) cohorts in the broader Tasmanian community.
From 2012 and 2016, more than 60 trips have been delivered across the state with over 1000 CALD participants. On these trips, the CALD participants are joined by PWS Discovery Rangers, Wildcare volunteers and migrant leaders. Since 2013, over 30 new arrivals to the state have been trained in outdoor leadership to support the trips by leading walks, delivering safety briefings and facilitating sensory experiences.
The Painted Cliffs on Maria Island provide a moment of reflection for Get Outside with Community program participants
- Creating social connections
- Connecting CALD Tasmanians with members of the wider Tasmanian community who are passionate about sharing their love of the island with newcomers
- Connecting to Tasmania
- Connecting CALD Tasmanians with Tasmania’s natural environment and heritage values
- Creating independence and resilience
- Building knowledge, skills and confidence in CALD Tasmanians to independently visit Tasmania’s reserves, and help to foster a sense of purpose
- Creating pathways
- Developing employment and volunteering pathways for CALD Tasmanians into the NRM/tour guiding/conservation industry
- Improving wellbeing
- Using Tasmania’s reserves as a platform to improve people’s physical, spiritual, mental and social health and wellbeing
- Building community
- Building and strengthening social connections and understanding within the Tasmanian community. The excursions provide a platform for friendships and support networks to form both with and between CALD people, the volunteers and the Discovery Rangers. It also provides a link back to CALD people living in Tasmania that may not have joined the excursions.
Immersing and exercising in wild places is widely recognised to improve not only people’s physical health but also their mental, emotional and spiritual wellbeing. To read more the role nature plays in our overall health and wellbeing, please see the Healthy Parks Healthy People Central website