In his book, Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder, Richard Louv reported a growing concern of parents, educators and physicians: Children aren't playing outside much anymore — not even in the back garden or the neighborhood park.
This change in our relationship with nature has profound implications for the mental, physical and spiritual health of future generations.
Not everyone accepts nature deficit as inevitable. Policy-makers in Connecticut, New Mexico, California and Washington state are pointing the way to a different future with recent programs and legislation encouraging outdoor time for school children. Conservation organizations, communities, teachers and individuals are developing programs and initiatives to reconnect children with nature.
Since the book’s publication, Louv and others have come to believe in the great potential for an international Leave No Child Inside campaign focused on education, urban design, architecture, conservation, and many other disciplines.
Leave No Child Inside, a new campaign to re-connect children and nature, is derived in part from an initiative of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection to foster greater environmental awareness in our children.