The Green Team

Providing outdoor and interpersonal experiences for children and young adults, helping them to value and understand nature and the natural environment through shared learning.

Est. number of people
who benefit directly

Our story

The Green Team provides life-changing outdoor and interpersonal experiences which transform the lives of children and young people, supporting them to learn about and connect with nature, others and themselves.

We provide opportunities in three core areas:

1) Connecting with nature:
Spending time and being active in the outdoors; making practical improvements to local green spaces; valuing and understanding nature and the natural environment through learning.

"An excellent way to learn more about the environment whilst taking part in conservation activities that make a difference to both wildlife and the local community"
- young person.

2) Connecting with others:
Spending time with others outdoors, reducing isolation; developing positive relationships and lasting friendships; developing social skills to work in a team, delivering outcomes for the community through team volunteering.

"The projects has changed me completely because I used to be a person that just used to sit by myself but ever since I've joined this project I've made a lot more friends"
- young person.

3) Connecting with self through wellbeing & personal development:
Trying new things, developing new skills; meeting challenges, developing resilience; developing confidence, self-esteem and self-efficacy; exploration of values, attitudes and behaviour; improved health and mental well-being.

"I have learned how to start fires, plant trees, make lots of friends and I have learned that what makes me the most happy is being in nature"
- young person.

The Green Team offers a range of programmes to children and young people to take part in outdoor learning, environmental projects and improvements to local community green spaces. We work with over 1,000 young people each year. We are an inclusive organisation with a focus on reaching those who are least likely to engage with the natural environment and have the most to gain from doing so.

In addition, we run training for teachers, parents and volunteers as well as environmental conservation projects for corporate groups - encouraging positive employee action for the natural environment and supporting employee wellbeing. Over 200 adults take part each year.

We work closely with local ranger services, to identify tasks that allow our programmes to make improvements to local green spaces, and work closely with schools, charities and other organisations to engage participants.

“The Green Team fills an important niche linking young people to their community, their environment, and their world.”
- City of Edinburgh Council Park Ranger.

We are an Edinburgh-based charity and have been running projects since 1995.

Our advice

There is great demand for people and organisations to get involved in activities in nature but it is important to:
- take people on that journey with you: delivering what you said you would, caring for individuals involved in your organisation, evidencing the benefits of your work;
- manage the organisation sustainably: be realistic, monitor your resources.

Our metrics

We record outputs, evaluate programme impact and gather feedback:
• 91% of Green Shoots participants improved confidence/self-esteem.
• 86% of Green Volunteers participants had improved knowledge and appreciation of the natural world.

"This day has given me the opportunity to do something to take care of myself and give something back to nature too. That feels really good.”
- Participant
Share this initiative
Young people getting involved in conservation.
Primary school litter picking.
Tree planting.