Welcome to PLACE – Paths to Learning: Active Community Exploration! This latest CDEC project is helping children take outdoor action to be active members of their communities whilst also developing their own resilience.

The PLACE project was developed in response to the main global and local challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic and Climate Change. The value of our local places and spaces were recognised during the pandemic and access to green spaces has been vital for the wellbeing of everyone.
With the stresses of global heating and biodiversity decline, we have come to understand better the importance of looking after our natural world and the 'eco-services’ we depend on. This project encourages young people to actively help to make a difference in their own place and so help our world become greener and more sustainable.

The value of ‘Community’ was recognised during the pandemic. While social distancing meant that groups could no longer meet physically together, online communication often took its place. However, this excluded or limited many people and the importance of physically meeting, showing care and compassion, and working towards a common aim has been recognised again as essential for happiness and resilience in face of challenges.

This project encourages young people to explore how they belong and connect to their local community and place. They build skills to act as leaders and agents of change to make a difference locally and so understand wider global issues.
Act Local - Think Global.

The PLACE project puts children at the heart of the action. They will be responding to their community’s needs through place-based learning and wellbeing approaches. Our project invites children to free their imaginations in order to lead with outdoor practical action in rebuilding from the Covid crisis.

From engaging with businesses to reduce plastic, to designing and creating therapeutic garden spaces for all to enjoy, to creating a ‘quest’ for young families, our children can make meaningful interventions as active citizens in their community.

What is the PLACE project?

Community and citizenship will be key features of this exciting two-year project. The aim is to put wellbeing at the core of learning in primary schools. It provides a creative opportunity for primary and secondary schools to ‘build forward’ from the challenges of Covid-19 and encourages young people to strengthen connections with the outdoors and to take an active role in their community.

It is led by CDEC, funded by Erasmus+ and will involve partners DEED (Development Education in Dorset), SEVER in the Czech Republic and SOSNA in Slovakia.

Supporting teachers and pupils

The project partners developed a menu of tools and resources that will support teachers to equip young people as agents of change and to become more resilient and hopeful citizens for the future.

Through this project and it's resources pupils can develop community-based projects that grow their skills and understanding of citizenship. They can build respect and care for their community and how they can make a difference for themselves and others.

Our resources support teachers to develop new skills in place-based learning and wellbeing approaches. 

How will this project link to the curriculum?

This project links well to geography and history; it strongly supports PSHE, emotional health, citizenship and language skills.

Project resources and ongoing support

This project has produced a range of resources for schools to use- to implement ideas and approaches with your pupils. The best place to access the resources is from the project website:

We have also developed training workshops for school staff:

- how to build the PLACE approach into your curriculum and outdoor learning, including key approaches from the project (questing, therapeutic gardening, community action and P4C)

Get in touch if you'd like a conversation about how CDEC can support your pupils to connect with place, people and planet: