Bristol woodland is dedicated to fighting PTSD and improving mental health

Press Release - 5.5.21

Bristol woodland is dedicated to fighting PTSD and improving mental health

Led by Jason ("Dusty") Miller, a former British soldier, a new community group is helping servicemen and servicewomen to be more at peace with themselves and with nature. The project is called MESH - 'Military and Emergency Services Help' and has been set up in response to the stresses experienced by soldiers, emergency services workers, prison workers and those in the frontline of the NHS. Jason and the MESH team offer bushcraft training and wild-camping, but the overall objective is to have fun and to meet like-minded people. As he says, "after serving as a soldier for 25 years around the world, from Afghanistan to America and Northern Ireland to Iraq, I personally struggled with mental health problems. If it hadn't been for the kindness of a stranger I would have lost my business and family. This drove me to set up MESH, which is a not-for-profit, in order to help others in a similar position."

Volunteer instructors teach skills like fire-lighting using friction, shelter-building, preparing game, and other outdoor skills. Many of those who attend are happy to just sit around a campfire drinking tea and making new friends. As Jason points out, "you can bring along family members and join in the monthly sessions usually held on the third weekend of every month. Our FaceBook page is at www.facebook.com/meshcic or you can email me at [email protected] for more details." Many of those who come along have skills to share so whilst the project is, on the face of it, about outdoor living and sharing skills, in reality it is also about forming new relationships and building better physical and mental health.

The project is sponsored by Woodlands.co.uk who have lent the woodland to MESH as part of its community woodlands project which also includes supporting mental health work in Kent, hosting several Forest Schools and supporting work with women recovering from abuse. If you have a not-for-profit project where you are looking for a woodland home please send an email to: [email protected].