So why is this important to do? How does it help us build people power, change the story and fix the system? A good nature outing will:
Nature is near and far — what matters is that you go outside into it. Host your Outing in the forest or the mountains, at the beach or in the bush, at a local park or reserve or the creek down the road. You could also host an Outing at a place you love that’s under threat — like the Great Barrier Reef, the Australian Alps, a forest threatened by logging, or some local bush at risk from mining, cattle grazing or a housing development. Or you could host it in a place that the ACF has fought to protect, like a wetland on the Murray River, Stradbroke Island, or an iconic national park.
It is important to understand how land was cared for before colonisation, and how it’s been damaged since. You can contact your local Indigenous nation or Land Council to see if they host walks and can tell you the ancient stories of the landscape.
You'll need to do a bit more research about the place that you’re visiting, its history pre-colonization and since. Which Aboriginal nation is the place located in? Which animal and plant species live there? How might they have been threatened? Take a couple of notes to share with your group on the day.
There are a couple of roles that will need to be clear on the outing itself, but the work in the lead up can be divided amongst your group as you see fit.
This person is responsible on the day for briefing participants, physically leading the group and making decisions that keep participants safe. The Outings Leader should try to help participants get to know each other and build connections. While they are in charge for that day, it is important that they fulfil their responsibility in the most kind, approachable and generous way.
This person is responsible on the day for supporting the Outings Leader, physically tailing the group, making sure that the pace is appropriate and that all members feel included.
First Aider (where necessary)
Some outings may be more remote and require someone to have basic first aid skills. While there is no legal requirement for community groups to have this, it is advised where possible.
Photographer (where necessary)
Is there someone in your group who can take photos and put them on the ACF Community Slack Channel?
Carpool Organiser (where necessary)
If the location is some distance away from where people live, it’s advised to carpool or catch public transport. If a carpool is necessary, it’s as simple as finding willing drivers, allocating people to cars, and making sure that they have each other’s phone numbers.