Social Forestry for Partner Organisations

Social Forestry comprises of health and well-being programmes run in a woodland setting, often involving woodland management tasks or woodland craft activities. Programmes are designed to build self-confidence, self-esteem, and social interaction, whilst connecting with nature.

This page aims to answer

 The benefits of Social Forestry

There is a robust and extensive body of research that suggests spending time in nature improves physical and mental wellbeing and decreases mortality. Research regarding Social Forestry projects run by Coed Lleol (Small Woods Wales) have shown two predominant benefits. Firstly, an improvement in positive relationships via social contact, thus decreasing isolation. Secondly, an improvement in perceived physical and mental wellbeing from time spent in nature doing physical activities (check out our Case Studies!).

Feedback from Coed Lleol (Small Woods Wales) Social Forestry session participants includes:

“My mental health is a lot better. Less stressed and more patient. If I am feeling stressed, I just go for a walk in the woods!”

(Actif Woods Wales Gwynedd participant)

  “Being in the woods really made changes in my children. My son is now so much more confident and happier around people. My daughter loves to play with mud and water, she is only 1 year old”

 (Neath Port Talbot Family Group participant)

 “I cannot thank Actif Woods enough for helping to make my world a little larger. I already spent a fair bit of time walking in the woods but was feeling a bit lost and directionless, the Actif Woods sessions helped me to feel connected again. I am making more effort to use my walks to improve my fitness and the new skills I have, have made me feel more engaged with the outdoors."

(Actif Woods Wales, Rhondda Cynon Taf participant)

For more information on the connection of humans and nature, have a look at our Social Forestry for Participants page.

Who we work with and what we can offer

We offer a variety of projects and work with a range of partner organisations across Wales and  the West of England. We can create bespoke social forestry programmes for partner organisations, or support your service users to join our existing projects, depending on the circumstances.


Coed Lleol (Small Woods Wales) encourages new partner organisations to get in touch. We work with a wide variety of local and national organisations and tailor social forestry programmes to specific audience requirements. We work with adults with various needs, as well as families. Find out about all of our projects across Wales, here.

Partners and supporters of Coed Lleol (Small Woods Wales) may be organisations in a local Actif Woods Wales project area, individuals who have share professional experience on our Advisory Board, or those who input to our projects in many other ways. For example, we have strong working relationships with regional MIND and Sure Start Hubs.

Coed Lleol (Small Woods Wales) partner organisations across Wales include:

  • Anglesey and Gwynedd: Flying Start Anglesey, Anglesey County Council, Blaen Y Coed, Tyddyn Mon (College for people with learning and physical disabilities), Hafal, Gorwel, Tan Y Maen (Mental Health Group), GISDA.
  • Denbighshire and Wrexham: Woodland Skills Centre, Flintshire Mind, Denbighshire County Council
  • Ceredigion and North West Powys: Dyfi Valley Outdoor Health Network, EcoDyfi, Borth GP Surgery, Dyfi Valley Health, Tai Ceredigion housing association, Drugaid, Mind Aberystwyth, Ceredigion County Council,
  •  Merthyr Tydfil and Rhondda Cynon Taf: Flying Start Rhondda Cynon Taf, Hafal, Gofal, Venture Out, Merthyr County Council, Pinewood House (Mental Health Care Home), Ysbyty George Thomas (Mental Health Facility), Drinkwise, Age well, Catrefi Cymru, Shaw Healthcare, Accomplish and Priory

Contact Coed Lleol (Small Woods Wales) Manager Amie Andrews with any queries: [email protected]


Build a Bench is a fully funded, 12-week programme aimed at people who are not currently in any kind of paid work and who live in Telford and Wrekin, and Shropshire. Click here to find out more.

How to refer service users to woodland sessions


Get in touch! We love to work with new organisations and can create a bespoke programme of woodland sessions for your service users. Alternatively, individuals can join our existing programme of sessions. 

Find out what is already available in your area on our Projects page, or click here to refer someone via our online form.

Contact Coed Lleol (Small Woods Wales) Manager Amie Andrews: [email protected] if you're interested in a bespoke programme for your service users.


Click here to find out about how to refer people to our Build a Bench project in Shropshire

Contact Amie Andrews: [email protected] with any queries