IOL News and OLA Interim Management Group update
From Jo Barnett, IOL CEO
We wish you all the very best as we move from bright summer to the softness of early autumn with its own cooling freshness.
Richard and I have been in our new posts for a couple of months, and it has been inspiring to see the strength and breadth of the Institute for Outdoor Learning. We are looking forward to meeting more of our members, partners and stakeholders and ensuring we understand well the specialisms, interests and regional priorities held within the charity. We are looking at improving communication within the IOL whether in specialist and regional groups and across the IOL as a whole. If you are a representative of a group, it would help us if you would check we have your current contact details. Fiona is collating this information and can be contacted via email here.
We have said a big thank you to Carmen Byrne who has been editing Horizons over the last few years, including those tricky Covid years, and welcomed Catherine Dunn to the role – look out for the next edition in early November to meet her, or you can get in touch directly by emailing
There is a project called the ‘Outdoor Learning Association’ – you may have already heard that the IOL, the Outdoor Council, the Association of Heads of Outdoor Education Centres and the British Activity Providers Association are considering coming together to create one single association. A group of volunteers have been busy identifying common overarching themes that we all wish to celebrate and further develop. They have also thought about those thorny issues that have consumed energy, time and resources and yet remain unresolved. This has provided a basis or creating the OLA Community. The attached document below (see the bottom of this webpage) is the culmination of conversations, discussions, and feedback from members and represents an absolute commitment to achieving a shared Outdoor Learning vision. Please do have a read, and all feedback is most welcome via email.
The IOL trustees are currently committed on embracing the consolidation of the 4 organisations, the creation of OLA and the benefits this brings. Whether or not IOL becomes OLA without the 3 other organisations will be a decision for the IOL trustees at an appropriate point in the journey. The collaborative process has proved to have had its own merit, and I am sure you will join with me in thanking the members of the Interim Management Group on behalf of the IOL.