Sector Specialist Groups

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Adventure for All

The Adventure for All (AfA) Sector Specialist Group was formed through the joining of the independent organisation “Adventure for All” with IOL. The members of AfA are either specialist providers of outdoor leaning for people with disabilities or those with a significant interest in this field. The main activity of the group is an annual conference, usually held at one of the specialist provider centres, where new ideas are shared and best practice is discussed.


Alternative Provision

The aim of this group is to support, resource and provide a voice for those providing alternative education in the outdoors. This group consists of practitioners who have passion for the outdoors and understand the impact that engaging with nature can have on children. We recognise the need for our members to provide planned activities which track a child’s social, emotional and mental health development that supports their educational development in their formal education placement.

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The Bushcraft SSG was founded in 2007 with the aim of promoting best practice in a growing industry. Our main aim was to ensure practitioners delivering short, half day sessions of bushcraft skills, were sufficiently competent to deliver those sessions safely.

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Environmental Stewardship

Coming Soon...

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Field Studies Group

The Field Studies Sector Specialist Group is made up of members who are engaged in, or have an interest in delivering study led programmes in Field Studies or Environmental Education. Many members are based at residential centres, but we also have members who organise day visits either at private venues or work in partnership with other organisations. Both Fieldwork and Environmental Education are long established ‘branches’ of outdoor learning and members have a wealth of experience to share.


Freelance Professional Cooperative

Hosted within the IOL membership structure, the cooperative of Freelance Outdoor Learning Professionals is specifically for self-employed & micro-businesses who are providing both clients facing and B2B contract services in the outdoor sector, i.e. freelancers.


Nature Premium - Under Development

We are calling for the government to introduce a Nature Premium to guarantee regular time in nature for ALL children and young people, with additional funding and support for those who need it most.


Outdoor Learning & Youth Work

Outdoor Learning and Youth Work play a vital role in supporting the holistic development of young people. By providing a cross-sector convening space, the Outdoor Learning Youth Work Sector Specialist Group (OLYWSSG) will act as a forum for organisations and individuals at a strategic level to identify areas for collaboration and at both a strategic and practitioner level share and build on existing good practice.

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Young Explorers Group

The Young Explorers Sector Specialist Group has been developed to champion and encourage active, challenging, and safe expeditions involving young people. It is widely recognized that considerable benefits are derived by a young person from participation in an expedition, a self-sufficient, extended residential peer group experience with a purpose, whether in the UK or abroad.


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