WILD Young Parents create safe outdoor space for young dads and their families

Funding from the Commissioners Community Grant Scheme has enabled WILD Young Parents to provide a safe ‘outdoor space’ at their local allotment to enable dads and their families to spend quality time together and offer opportunities for work outside with families.

This space provides young dads new skills in gardening, growing food, tending an outdoor space, working as a team, and spending positive time with their family.

WILD Young Parents have found their fledgling allotment to be a great space for dads to open up about their feelings, spend quality time with their families, bond with other dads, and feel a sense of achievement.

Our WILD dads often face complex barriers to parenthood; 4 in 10 have had contact with criminal justice, 6 in 10 have experienced mental ill health, and 1 in 5 struggle with addiction or substance dependency issues. This space will help to combat these issues by:

  • Increasing contact time with child
  • Increasing enjoyment of time with child
  • Improving communication between parents
  • Better able to describe and express emotions and mental state
  • Teaching coping strategies for feeling calm when faced with trigger points
  • Increasing physical activity
  • Improving healthy eating


Case study from WILD Young Parents: Life changing impact

“A young dad and son have been regular visitors to the allotment, they have learned new skills and built a new friendship group. Dad is about to start a college course and has enquired about starting a WILD book club, as well as performing with the choir. His son was showing signs of developmental delay with his communication when he started engaging with WILD, he is now a happy, talkative little boy.

This young man grew up in an abusive household, as a teenager he was caught by the police, in possession of a stolen vehicle and was a regular drug user.

This young man’s relationship with the mother of his son broke down, she was struggling with her mental health and could not keep their son safe in her home.

An assessment was carried out and the little boy moved in with his dad.

His dad has been supported by WILD 1:1 and in groups at the allotment, conversations about drug use and ‘self medicating’ had occurred and this young man stopped his use in order to be an effective parent to his son.

This young man has a new partner and baby and a healthy happy little boy.”