Screenings of documentary film at highest peaks in the UK to mark National Children’s Day UK
This weekend, The Wild Network is supporting extreme film screenings of its feature length documentary ‘Project Wild Thing’ in three of the UK’s wildest landscapes to encourage families to take their screens outdoors to help reconnect a generation of kids with nature.
On 10 and 11 May mini-screenings of the film will be shown at the summits of Ben Nevis, Snowdon and Scafell Pike, the highest peaks in Britain. Members of the public won’t be expected to scale the heady heights of the peaks; instead they will be invited to watch the full film in comfort at the foot of the mountains.
The screenings have been arranged to help celebrate National Children’s Day (NCD) UK, a nationwide celebration of the rights of the child. Organised by the Save Childhood Movement, this year National Children’s Day is devoted to reconnecting children with nature.
Wendy Ellyatt from National Children’s Day UK said: “British children have never been more disconnected from nature as they are today. Time spent playing outdoors has halved in a generation, roaming ranges have fallen drastically, activity levels are declining and the ability to identify many of our most common species has been lost. This is likely to have a profound impact on how they will view the importance of the natural environment as they grow up.
“It’s vital that we address our children’s connection with nature and act now to get them back to the wild.”
Project Wild Thing is a film and campaign aimed at reconnecting young people with the outdoors. Supported by The Wild Network – a group of 1,500 organisations including the National Trust and 5,500 individuals – the campaign calls on people to swap at least 30 minutes screen time for ‘wild time’ every day. A free smartphone app packed full of outdoor adventures has been developed to help families get their half an hour extra wild time.
Marketing Director for Nature and star of “Project Wild Thing”, David Bond, said: “Our children have never been more disconnected from the natural world. It’s making them unhealthier, unhappier and less adventurous.
“Project Wild Thing is about inspiring the explorers and naturalists of the future, encouraging families to get of the sofa and out into the wild.”
Robert Macfarlane, author of The Wild Places and The Old Ways, and campaign supporter said: “Wild places hold a peculiar fascination for children. As a child I collected fossils and rocks on holidays in the Scottish Highlands. Every rock held a different story about the place it was found – and bound my memories and imagination into those landscapes. I want today’s children still to be free to find wonder, stones and stories out in nature.
“Project Wild Thing is a terrific film, crackling with wit and passion, about the vital issue of getting our children engaged with the wild world around them.”
Anyone can get involved in setting up their own wild screenings – from heading out in your local park doing you own ‘wild’ mini-screening of the trailer to getting your friends and neighbours together for a community screening of the full film.
David Bond continued: “Community screenings of documentaries are a rare thing in the UK. Getting a group of friends, neighbours or colleagues together to watch Project Wild Thing is a great way to spark off conversations and inspire people to get kids outdoors.”