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Find A Forest Near You

  • Sophie
  • 26th April 2016

There's a lot of reasons to love our forests.

They provide a leafy sanctuary where we can escape the hustle and bustle. They offer a place where we can relax, take some time out and connect with nature. We visit them to explore, to spot wildlife and to see the effects of changing seasons. They are a space to discover, whether we choose to walk, run, bike, swing or roll our way around them!

Of course, the Go Ape tribe have a lot to thank forests for they provide us with our workspace, after all! Because of forests, Tris and Becs were able to turn their dream into reality, creating a Tree Top Adventure for everyone to enjoy.

Did you know that last month we celebrated the International Day of Forests?

Established by the United Nations General Assembly four years ago, the aim of the day was to raise awareness of the importance of the world's forests and trees.

But, why raise awareness? Well, our forests may be fun and they may be beautiful, but they are also one of our planet's most important ecosystems. They are our earth's lungs, absorbing carbon dioxide and producing oxygen, and they're also home to more than 80% of the world's land-based plants and animals.

However, we're losing forest cover at an alarming rate.

More than 500 million hectares have been burnt down in the past decade, destroying habitats and putting many species of wildlife at increased risk of extinction. It's not too late to make a change, but we must act now.

The theme for this year's International Day of Forests was water, looking at how forests are vital to the earth's freshwater supply. According to the UN, forested watersheds and wetlands provide 75% of the world's accessible freshwater, while around one-third of the world's biggest cities obtain a substantial proportion of drinking water from forest protected areas. Forests are natural water filters, yet climate change is altering their role in water flows and is impacting the availability of water resources.

What you can do

Our forests are mega important around one billion people depend on them for their livelihood. Let's not forget about all the animals that live there, or the endless varieties of plants and trees that thrive there.

International Day of Forests might have passed but there are a number of things you can do to continue showing your support. Watching and sharing the official International Day of Forests video will help raise awareness.

Above all else, simply visiting and spending time in a forest near you is a great way to celebrate International Day of Forests. You could go on a bike ride with your family, or take a more leisurely stroll through the trees. Or, if you've a penchant for Tarzan-inspired adventure, why not swing through the trees at Go Ape? The Forestry Commission website features a map of all the UK's forests and woodlands and features a list of events to get involved in.

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