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Our vision is that all young people have an open pathway to mental wellbeing

Connection to nature, connection to others and connection to self

The Wild Mind Project is a not-for-profit community interest company based in Brighton. We support the mental health of young people aged 11 to 25 through nature connectedness. We have designed an intervention programme that complements or offers an alternative to one-to-one counselling.

The unique combination of nature, mindfulness and creative activities can provide a real benefit to young people living with stress, depression and anxiety. Importantly, the young people form a network of supportive new friends that will last well beyond the programmes.

The Wild Mind Project’s programmes are fully grant-funded, meaning they are free for young people.

Our general programmes are for young people experiencing mental ill-health and we also run programmes specifically to support the young LGBTQ+ community. Occasionally, we run programmes for particularly vulnerable groups, such as young people with mild to moderate learning disabilities or young carers.


Young people supported annually


Funding secured this financial year


Programmes delivered annually

Meet the team

Directors, staff and volunteers at The Wild Mind Project share a belief that nature offers innumerable benefits for mental health. We have come together from diverse backgrounds with a broad range of expertise and lived experience, to support young people experiencing mental ill-health in the city of Brighton and Sussex.


Berny Simcox (she/her)

An experienced charity CEO, Berny holds degrees in Wildlife Conservation and Environmental Sustainable Development. She has published academically on strategies for advancing sustainable development education and lectured on Sustainable Development and Wildlife Management & Conservation. Berny has a strong operational background and is also a qualified Mindfulness & Meditation Teacher and a Forest Bathing Guide.


Dave Frake (he/him)

Qualified as a PE teacher at Brighton University in 2006, Dave has specialist training in inclusive Outdoor Education. Currently head of ‘Adventure Education’ at Bowden House School, Dave works with students who have been excluded from mainstream education. Many have suffered lives of trauma, neglect and abuse, resulting in the students having a complex range of negative emotions. All students have SEN status. Ofsted has rated the care, teaching and learning at Bowden House school as ‘Outstanding’ for the past eight years. Activities include rock climbing, camping, forest school, bushcraft, outdoor survival, orienteering, hill walking, kayaking, paddle boarding and mindfulness. Dave brings his wealth of experience to the board.


David A'Court (he/him)

Worked for a major bank in London and the South West until retirement. After retirement, David worked part-time as a finance officer for two environmental charities for over 12 years.  He has also held the post of Treasurer for a  health charity for over 25 years.


Luke Johnson (he/him)

Luke is a queer artist, facilitator and teacher with a love of the outdoors and a passion for sharing the benefits of nature and art with others.

Growing up as a trans kid in rural Sussex, Luke felt the positive effect of spending time outside, discovering how walking, gardening and exploring could help manage the stress and anxiety he was experiencing.

Arts and crafts also provided a way to relax and play. In his work as a facilitator, Luke helps create safe, supportive environments and encourages people to use art as a tool for experimentation and self-expression.


James Simcox (he/him)

James originally studied Agriculture and farmed all around the world. On his return to the UK, James set up a number of businesses, including gift shops across London. He set up one of the first online shops at The Savoy Hotel. Today, James is the Buyer for our online shop, “Bon Feu”, and helps deliver programmes.


Willa (she/her)

More poodle than terrier, Willa brings her affection, enthusiasm and unrelenting energy to the project.

The Nature of Creating Wellbeing

The Wild Mind Project is a not-for-profit community interest company that is grant funded, enabling us to offer programmes to young people in need, free of charge.

Safe guarding

The Wild Mind Project recognise our moral and statutory responsibility to safeguard the welfare of all young people in our care, staff and volunteers.

Our funders and supporters

We would not be able to support the mental wellbeing of young people without the support of our funders and the organisations that also support our work in other ways. Thank you.


Do you have a question? Attending anything new when you are feeling anxious is daunting. Our FAQ may well help.

Please donate to support our work.

You can help make a big difference to young people experiencing mental ill-health today.

The Wild Mind Project is a not-for-profit Community Interest Company, which means that any surplus funds are reinvested to support our work with young people. Thank you for your support!