Our Social Forestry and Wellbeing Team


Portrait of Amie Andrews

Amie Andrews - [email protected]

Amie manages our Social Forestry and Wellbeing Team. Her work focuses on health and wellbeing activities in woodlands across the UK. She manages the effective delivery of our social forestry and wellbeing projects, balancing the requirements of stakeholders from the health, environment and training sectors.

Amie also raises the profile of Small Woods, taking forward the strategic direction, whilst developing funding ideas to build the scope and breadth of our social forestry programmes. 

Amie is an anthropologist by background with experience in teaching and project management.

Research and Evaluation Coordinator 

Helen Hedworth - [email protected]

Helen coordinates Coed Lleol’s research and evaluation, collaborating with researchers in the field of nature and health, and monitoring and evaluating Coed Lleol’s social forestry projects.

With a background in ecology, much of her work has been in impact assessment for development projects, but she has also worked on international research projects, and as a lecturer and tutor of biology. Spending less time working in the field these days, Helen is all too aware of how therapeutic natural spaces can be (and how too much time inside isn’t good for us!) From a scientific perspective, she is also curious of how our sensory and evolutionary biology hard-wire us to thrive in a natural environment.

Her favourite tree is the walnut, as the fruits are delicious and the wood beautifully patterned!

North Wales Coordinator

Portrait of Kate Clements

Kate Clements - [email protected]

Kate has a background in Environmental Education, coming from a Geography teaching background. She ran successful projects in the Great North Forest before coming to work at Coed Lleol (Small Woods Wales).

Kate is good at working and relating to people from diverse backgrounds, and loves being outdoors, mountain walking with her family, and travelling.

Her favourite trees are Apples, as they are both edible and beautiful.


Mid and West Wales Coordinator

Rosie Strang - [email protected]

Rosie has over twenty-two years' experience developing projects, networks and events in the environment, arts and education sectors, working with communities and organisations across the UK and Wales. Before Coed Lleol this included several years working with Llais y Goedwig - the community woodland network for Wales as their Network Coordinator.

Underpinning this work been an active interest in the natural world and sustainability – and how we care for this world, and each other. Locally living in the Dyfi Biosphere in Mid Wales this has been swimming and walking, as well as a new parent chairing the local children's forest group. Internationally this has been through volunteer placements in community forestry and wellbeing in India, Hawaii and Brazil.

South West and central Wales Coordinator

Portrait of Alison Moore

Alison Moore - [email protected]

Starting her career in youth and community work, Alison spent time delivering outreach and centre-based and alternative education projects to young people. She then moved into education, leading an enrichment provision that developed and delivered a wide range of activities and opportunities to help expand young people’s experiences.

On moving to Wales (Pembrokeshire), Alison embarked on working in the employment and skills sector. As a training advisor who later managed a range of externally funded projects, she helped engage individuals and communities in personal development programmes for people of all ages and abilities from 16+.

Joining Small Woods as ‘South West and Central Wales Coordinator’ on a range of projects across Carmarthenshire, Swansea, NPT, RCT and Merthyr, is an exciting opportunity to bring together her love of the outdoors and her experience of supporting individuals and projects.

South West Wales Coordinator

Mike May - [email protected]

Mike has experience in a number of sectors, including business, finance, and  recently 15 years with The National Trust working in various roles.

A keen lover of sport, the environment and photography, his favourite green and blue space is the 2,000 acre Stackpole Estate in Pembrokeshire which has it all:- beaches, freshwater lakes, dramatic cliffs, designed landscape, natural woodlands and a National Nature Reserve with 16 species of bats! Mike lives in Pembrokeshire with his family, including Maisey, a very spoilt working cocker spaniel.  

Woodland Hubs Coordinator

Portrait of Zena Wilmot

Zena Wilmot - [email protected]

Zena is part of the Social Forestry & Wellbeing and Woodland Management teams coordinating the woodland infrastructure and hubs stand of the ‘Outdoor Health and Green Infrastructure’ project. 

As well as working for Coed Lleol, Zena works part-time for Llais y Goedwig as Network Facilitator. Zena has more than 15 years’ experience working in the woodland sector in Wales and has a background in research, woodland management and social forestry. She has a passion for sustainability and has worked at the CAT and Sunseed eco projects.

She is also a founding member of the Bodfrigan Housing Cooperative. In her spare time she enjoys foraging and making things out of natural materials. Her favourite tree is the rowan for its tenacity and bright red berries in the autumn woodlands.

Training Coordinator

Cathy Velmans
Cathy Velmans - c
[email protected]

Cathy has 20 years experience working for outdoor and environmental organisations including Natural Resources Wales, where she designed and delivered nature-based training for professionals, Forest School courses and woodland education sessions. 

She loves yoga, walking and being in the outdoors and also enjoys meeting and chatting to new people. Her favourite trees are Hawthorn for its beautiful flowers in spring and Oak for its strength and peace. 

Data Administrative Officer

Claire Tuxworth

Claire Tuxworth - [email protected]

Claire loves being outdoors, going for long walks and exploring new places – especially woodlands - along with helping to support the team in her admin role at Coed Lleol / Small Woods.

Claire runs her own art business where she combines her art practice with her love of the natural world.

Her favourite trees are Hawthorn and Elder because of the fascinating stories of folklore that surround them.

Project Officers based in England


Rebecca Vincent-Evans - [email protected]
Build a Bench Project Engagement Officer

Rebecca (Beccy) is responsible for our Build a Bench project which is funded by the Building Better Opportunities project and runs at the Green Wood Centre in Coalbrookdale.

Beccy has worked in the education and employment sector for over 20 years and is a qualified tutor of adults experiencing mental health issues or struggling to find employment. She believes in delivering person-centred interventions to remove barriers and nurtures a growth mindset and supporting people to recognise their skills, increase their confidence and self-esteem - turning barriers into opportunities.


Project Officers based in Wales


Vivienne Plank

Vivienne Plank - [email protected]

Vivienne loves music and the outdoors. As well as working at Coed Lleol (Small Woods Wales), she is an Assistant Manager in a gift shop at a busy tourist attraction in Anglesey, runs social media accounts promoting live music, and stage manages at festivals. 

Vivienne hopes that one day there will be a Green Wood and Woodland Skills Centre in Anglesey.

Her favourite tree is Oak, as she has a relationship with a particular local oak tree.

Becky Brandwood-Cormack

Becky Brandwood-Cormack - [email protected]

Becky loves playing outside, whether that’s trail running, mountain biking, wild swimming or a mindful stroll in the woods. She enjoys foraging for medicinal plants, bird watching and tree hugging. She has studied nutrition and loves tasty, healthy plant-based food to maximise her physical and mental health. Becky is passionate about nature and encouraging others to build their connection with the natural world in order to create a more harmonious and reciprocal relationship.

She has previously worked in leisure centre management and sports development, holistic wellness and is co-founder of the Free Hugs initiative in South Wales.

She can’t possibly choose a favourite tree as they are all so unique and offer us so much in terms of medicine, wisdom and beauty.

Melissa Dhillon

Melissa Dhillon -

Melissa is enthusiastic and passionate about nature and loves spending time outside, especially in woodlands. As well as working for Small Woods, she is a freelance forest school leader and social forestry practitioner and works for a community woodland group as an Education Officer.

Her favourite tree is blackthorn in spring, birch in summer, maple in autumn and beech in winter.


Portrait of Lauren Wood
Lauren Wood - [email protected]

Lauren is passionate about bringing nature and people closer together. She spent 10 years working in environmental and outdoor education for organisations such as RSPB and Field Studies Council and led overseas expeditions to places like Borneo before her body told her to slow down.

Life is now slightly more sedate with a lot more meditation and book reading but when she isn’t wild swimming, baking cookies, writing songs, or working for Small Woods, she runs a part time wilderness and well-being coaching business for women.

Her favourite tree is Beech for the beautiful colours.



Elise Hughes - 
[email protected]

Elise is a project officer for Merthyr Tydfil and RCT and is responsible for delivering woodland wellbeing programmes across these regions.

Elise has a background of delivering psychological therapies and wellbeing interventions and is passionate in supporting others with their wellbeing and connection to the outdoors. In her spare time, she enjoys rambling, taking photos of scenic landscapes and meditation.

Her favourite tree is field maple for its rich golden-yellow colours in autumn.


Katie Barrett

Katie Barrett - [email protected]
Community Health and Wellbeing Officer - Lost Peatlands Project Officer
Woodland Wellbeing Woodland Project Officer (Job share with Suzanne Chapple)

Katie Barrett is a wildlife fanatic with interests and skills in horticulture, mental well-being, wildlife rescue and eating cake. She has a background in environmental science and working with people with disabilities.

Her favourite trees are beech trees, because their colours in autumn are stunning.


Portrait of Suzanne Chapple

Suzanne Chapple - [email protected]

Alongside her Project Officer role, Suzanne is a freelance Forest School and Woodland Leader who loves helping people connect with nature and woodlands. 

In her spare time, she practises yoga, is studying Permaculture and enjoys spending time in her garden and exploring different woodlands with her children and the dog.

Her favourite tree is the Hawthorn. She used to spend a lot of time sitting in the one in her garden as a child and still feels very drawn to them. She is lucky enough to have one in her garden too!


Richard May -  [email protected]                                                                                                                                                                             

Richard's role focuses on facilitating for the local community to access woodland activities, to ensure that those woodlands are safe to use and that our impact on them is positive. 

Richard has over 25 years experience working with people in the outdoors.  He started his career working in outdoor pursuits centres before moving into Forest Schools.  He has set up and managed several large Forest School centres that focused their provision towards children and young people who struggle to find success within mainstream education.  His work has been driven by a strong belief that the outdoor environment, along with the building of significant relationships, are the best tools to support improved mental health and wellbeing. 

Richard also runs his own bespoke furniture business where he uses reclaimed wood to make new creations.  He can usually be found in his workshop or in the woods. 



Portrait of Nico Jenkins

Nico Jenkins - [email protected]

Nico studied Psychology (BSc) and Conservation and Land Management (MSc) and has a background in farming and supporting vulnerable adults. She has specialist knowledge in medicinal woodland fungi and an interest in nature connection, mindfulness, herbalism, woodland ecology and foraging.

Nico has a passion for the healing and restorative power of nature and loves to create a safe and welcoming space for her groups in the woodlands of Swansea. Nico is a fluent Welsh speaker and also works in the local college supporting young people from Welsh language schools on the landscaping course.   

Her favourite tree is the magical Elder, because it gives us both Elderflowers and Elderberries.

Gemma Neaves - [email protected]                                                                                                                                                                      Woodland Wellbeing Project & Engagement Officer (Youth) – Swansea and NPT                                                                          

Gemma has a background in teaching and Third Sector project delivery with a wellbeing focus. Her skills lie in working with children and young people from areas of multiple deprivation, and English as an additional language. Gemma has worked with a wide age range from Kindergarten to Universities across South Wales and also, China, and South Korea.

Gemma loves to spend her free time connecting with nature in woodlands: foraging, searching for fungi, practising mindfulness, and observing flora and fauna. She believes nature creates a sense of belonging and purpose as we reconnect to the natural world. In her work, Gemma aims to boost young people’s self esteem and confidence in connecting with outdoor green space in fun and safe manner which supports their mental and physical health. She loves her job as as it combines both of her passions into one!


Carli Porter - [email protected]                                                                                                                                                                                    

Carli has a passion for supporting others on their wellness journey and a love for outdoors. As a Qoya Inspired movement facilitator, she supports people in connecting with their innate wisdom, remembering their essence as Wise, Wild and Free. As such, flowing rivers and ancient woodlands clearly align.

For many years she home schooled her three young children, witnessing how supportive the natural environment is to personal development - for learning, playing, and simply being… for herself as much as the children! Carli has a degree in Contemporary Craft from Falmouth which led to her completing her PGCE in Secondary Art and Design. Her true passion is natural learning; how as humans we learn from the moment we enter this world; embracing a natural curiosity that serves to meet our deep needs. You'll find her making beautiful mandalas, using fallen leaves in the woods or pebbles on a beach. At the sessions she'll be a friendly face with an open mind and caring nature, tending to the kettle on the fire. 

Her favourite woodland is St Mary's Vale, a swathe of ancient oaks on the slopes of the Sugar Loaf. The rushing stream and the wind in the canopy providing the backdrop to mythic scenery… a place that inspires… like so many places in Wales to explore; to embrace… as a dedicated Woodland Wellbeing Project Officer she hopes to connect folks in the community with nature and themselves. 


Calum Stark - [email protected]

Calum is the woodland management project officer for Pembrokeshire.

He has spent the last few years as a freelance woodland instructor, teaching others about coppicing, greenwood craft and sustainable woodland management.

He helps to run a farm with his girlfriend that provides organic produce for local businesses and customers. Calum also plays the flute and works a freelance musician for a charity that provides music for hospitals and care homes.

Calum has obtained a degree in Psychology, specialising in the benefits of nature-based activities. He is passionate about non-violent communication (NVC).

His favourite tree is a Holly!

Frankie (Sam) Evans - [email protected]

Frankie has joined the team from Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, having worked there for 5 years as the Walkability Officer. Prior to this, Frankie worked as a day centre manager for Value Independence, a care company supporting vulnerable adults.  During her spare time you will generally find Frankie in the woods in a hammock with a pot of foraged tea on the fire. With her background working with adults with disabilities and disengaged group, she has seen the benefits that the outdoors has on everyone who steps into it, and it is this passion for making woodlands accessible to all that brought her to us.