Our History

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It all started when…

Early childhood educators have long been the champions of the young child's vital need to be attached and related, but have often overlooked the necessity of this attachment and relationship with Nature. Over the past decade the United States has seen a shift, and more programs for young children are discovering the crucial benefits and importance of a child’s connection to Nature. With the dramatic growth of nature and forest-based programs, we felt the need to come together to represent the work we were doing.

Our dream was to create a movement to protect and nourish the birthright of all children to be intimately connected with the land they are born to. In early 2015, forest school directors and program leaders in California gathered with the intention to share, learn, teach, and strategize with one another. We knew that collaboration and partnership were essential in shaping this flowering movement in a positive way.

Out of this connection blossomed the California Association of Forest Schools, a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting and furthering high quality forest schools. The Association is committed to building healthy bridges between the forest school movement and the larger community. We look forward to working with our members through workshops and events and aim to strengthen connections within our learning and professional communities.

To read more about the Founding Board Members, please visit: Board of Directors.