Having fulfilled much of our original mission to preserve open space in Lewisboro, the Lewisboro Land Trust has shifted gears to an emphasis on environmental education and exposure, or as our tagline says, “linking people to the land.” As part of that mission, LLT introduced the Access Nature program three years ago. The goal of the program is to provide disabled and disadvantaged individuals, with an easy comfortable, and safe experience with nature and to connect them with the benefits it provides. According to our Co-Chair Bonnie Robins, “The success we’ve had and the need we’ve identified have caused us to embark on expanding the program. We’ve discovered that the need and desire for this is almost endless.”
During the pilot, we ran programs with the intellectually challenged and the mentally ill, persons with brain injuries, and non-English speaking immigrant families and children who live in our communities. The response has been overwhelmingly positive. Among the many benefits experienced by participants are reduced anxiety and depression, a sense of well being, stimulation of cognitive functiioning and creative poroblem solving, socialization and an increase in curiosity and self-esteem.
It is the wish of the LLT to be able to offer this program to a greater constituency, including veterans, and those with hearing and visual disabilities. We recently hired Gigi Guthrie as Access Nature Program Coordinator. These programs are all provided free to the groups we work with. Our goal is to be able to offer 20 of these programs a year by 2020. To date, we have raised about a third of our $50,000 three-year budget, and we are turning to you to help us raise the remainder so that we can fulfill the promise of bringing these programs to a much wider community. Please note that all donations made to the LLT Access Nature Program, a 501c3, are tax deductible. To help us to help the disabled and disadvantaged reap the benefits of nature, please click HERE. If you would prefer to donate by check, please send your check made out to Lewisboro Land Trust AN to LLT, POB 496, South Salem, NY 10590.
Thank you for your kindness and compassion.
Here’s what the Record-Review has to say about Access Nature…