Nature for All: Creating a Family-friendly, Special Needs-friendly Hiking Group

What do you get when you mix a beautiful day, 9 beautiful kids (some who have special needs) and a beautiful, family-friendly hiking trail? A spectacular day that is full of fun, adventure and empowerment.

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excuse the bad photography–I was busy with the kiddos and just trying to keep up!

I decided to create a hiking group in my community that would be geared towards the motto of nature for all. Here is the description I used when I first launched the idea:

We are a group of families who believe that every child should have the chance to explore nature. All types of families are welcome, especially those with special needs children. Our goal is to plan one family-friendly nature walk/nature hike each month, in addition to a twice yearly super-sized hiking event. You can attend just one, or come to them all! All excursions will be educational, non-intimidating and fun!

Today was our first hike and it was a great success. A good time was had by all! I am so excited to show the world that nature and outdoor exploration is for all, one family at a time.

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Today we got to catch tadpoles, feed and view birds and get up close and personal with some frogs, snakes and turtles. We hiked a 1/3 mile loop trail and finished the day by exploring the nearby pond, nature center and dirt playground. All in all, it was one fantastic day!

9 thoughts on “Nature for All: Creating a Family-friendly, Special Needs-friendly Hiking Group

  1. zencamperwes

    What a great idea! Can you give tips for how to start such a hiking club? I would especially be interested in your tips for being inclusive–what to consider, how to ensure it is accessible for all, what pitfalls you anticipated.

    You are an inspiration!

    Reply
  2. zencamperwes

    Great idea! Would you mind giving tips for how to arrange such a group–how to make sure it is inclusive, how to find accessible locations, what pitfalls to consider?

    You are an inspiration!

    Reply
    1. Hiking Mama

      Hi! Thank you :) I had thought about writing a tip post but wasn’t sure anyone would be interested, but it turns out that several are! I will share some tips and ideas in a post this evening. Thanks so much for stopping by.

      Reply

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