The Government’s Natural Environment White Paper (2011) aims to strengthen connections between people and nature. However it acknowledges that the opportunities to benefit from spending time in the natural environment are currently not open to everyone, which can contribute to health and other inequalities. So the Government’s ambition, set out in the White Paper, is that ‘everyone should have fair access to a good quality natural environment’.
Natural England is committed to increasing the number and range of people who can experience and benefit from the natural environment and is championing Outdoors for All on behalf of Government and the natural environment, greenspace, volunteering and heritage sectors by working with partners to help improve the quality of everyone’s experience of natural places and to increase the number and diversity of people inspired by and enjoying the natural environment.
Through the Outdoors for All programme Natural England is working closely with a range of partners to help deliver projects which seek to ensure that people living in deprived areas, the elderly, those with physical disabilities, mental health illness, learning difficulties and people from black, Asian and minority ethnic communities all have opportunities to access high quality natural environments
As part of the Outdoors for All programme, Natural England is keen to better understand the issues and priorities to help improve engagement in the natural environment amongst BAME and other urban deprived communities. This report should help to better understand the effectiveness of current practice and the challenges of scaling up delivery.