A job like no other at Running Deer

A familiar conversation…

A job like no other

As we return to the woods after the festive period we all share tails of adventures in the real world.

What has struck me this year, the 1st Christmas since being in post at Running Deer I’m struck by the number of times I’ve had the following conversation with the those annual acquaintances, far-flung family and trusted only fiends.

Or even worse (in my opinion anyway) family or friends of friends it’s the latter where this chat always happen:

New person: So tell me about this new job?
Me: it’s a small alternative provision in the woods near Moretonhampstead on Dartmoor, its set in 16 acres, three small cabins and 2 camps.
New person: wow that sounds pretty cool, er… what do you do if its raining?
Me: get wet,
New person: Really?
Me: Yeah, facing that kind of adversity build resilience, helps people be strong when they need to be, if you can cope of 3 weeks of Dartmoor rain you can pretty much cope with anything.
New person: So what kind of kids you have there?
Me: A pretty big range actually, from people with mental health issues, social interaction needs Autism and those that just can’t cope with mainstream.
New person: That sounds pretty hard, so do they act out much?
Me: We get some stuff that’s out of the ordinary for most schools, but it always comes from somewhere, it’s always driven by something deeper than just not behaving.
New person: Ah, ok… so it’s like a forest school for kids with additional needs?
Me: No, its more a school in a forest, we offer a full education, GCSE’s, vocational qualifications as well as therapeutic stuff like eco therapy, and working with animals and horses, and den building as stuff, these kids have found mainstream difficult, we need to find a way of getting them learning that suits them.
New person: That sounds really cool! I’m jealous of you but I defiantly couldn’t do your job!
Me I love it, I couldn’t imagine doing anything else, I’ve got such an amount of freedom its great. So what is it you do?
New person: I work as insurance underwriter
Me: Oh- do you want another drink?


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