Reversing Nature Deficit

Reversing Nature Deficit

Societal movement to reconnect children with nature and introduce the importance of the outdoors as a health benefit for children and adults, inspired by the book by journalist Richard Louv, "Last Child in the Woods". Louv coined the phrase "nature deficit disorder" to describe the wide range of behavioral problems in children that may be caused by the sharp reduction of unstructured time spent in the outdoors.

As part of the movement, the National Wildlife Federation developed a policy plan that aims to reconnect children with nature [ [ NWF's Reversing Nature Deficit Page] ] and the outdoors through advocating for environmental education, educating the public health community about nature deficit disorder, increasing opportunities for outdoor recreation experiences [ [ Play and Observe Outside] ] for children through better design and access, and embarking on a national public outreach campaign to encourage parents to build in regular time for unstructured outdoor play.


Inspired by the Richard Louv book "Last Child in the Woods", in 2006 the National Wildlife Federation launched the Reversing Nature Deficit campaign. Through NWF programs and in partnership with education, health care, natural resources and other environmental organizations, the campaign aims to confront the problem of nature deficit in America's children. In 2008, NWF published Connecting Kids with Nature [ [ Connecting Kids with Nature: A Policy Action Plan] ] , a policy action plan prepared by Heather White, Esq., Director of Education Advocacy for the National Wildlife Federation. Also in 2008, NWF gathered thousands of signatures for a petition to the U.S. Surgeon General [ [ NWF Petition to the U.S. Surgeon General] ,] , urging him to recommend increased time in the outdoors for children.

Programs Working to Reverse Nature Deficit

*Green Hour campaign [ [ Green Hour Campaign] ]
*Great American Backyard Campout [ [ Great American Backyard Campout] ]
*Wildlife Watch [ [ Wildlife Watch] ]
*Make Tracks! Family Trail Weekend [ [ Make Tracks! Family Trail Weekend] ]
*NatureQuest [ [ NatureQuest] ]

Articles About Reversing Nature Deficit

* Association for Experiential Education [ [ Association for Experiential Education] ]
* Kidsville News [ [ Kidsville News on Reversing Nature Deficit] ]
* [ [ on Reversing Nature Deficit] ]
* [ [ Tree Hugger's Article on Reversing Nature Deficit] ]


*American Recreation Coalition [ [ American Recreation Coalition] ]
*National Recreation and Parks Association
*Sierra Club
*Chesapeake Bay Foundation
*Association of Children Museums


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