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Woodland Path


Down to Earth is a Nature-inspired & connected well-being programme for voluntary sector leaders throughout North Yorkshire & Humberside Region.

Where the Mind Grows - in collaboration with Community First Yorkshire - offers a range of personal development and well-being sessions for leaders (at all levels) who value the importance of prioritising mental and physical health.  Seeing the benefits this can have for you personally and the wider impact on your team and organisational culture, too. 

These 'down to earth' sessions are for leaders of all levels,  experience, and diversity, and aim to offer practical and resourceful sessions for well-being and leadership challenges in the sector.

'Nature-Inspired' and connected sessions aim to provide you with a range of development tools, approaches, and understanding. Experience the value of Nature for well-being & leadership. And draw on new experiences for sustainable, longer-term impact. 

Over summer/autumn 2023 - four individual sessions will be delivered in beautiful natural settings across Yorkshire. Under the programme 'Down to Earth'. 

These sessions are a space to enhance and value your own personal leadership development & well-being.  However, the tools and resources explored can also benefit your teams and organisations, beyond the natural setting of our sessions together. Resulting in longer-term, sustainable leadership impact. 

INTRO - Why Nature?

And a welcome from JK (Where the Mind Grows Founder) 

Where the Mind Grows was founded to help leaders like you enhance the way you work in an ever-changing & challenging environment. 

If you'd like to learn more about my own experience in leadership & why I coach and facilitate leaders and workplace well-being for impact and change check out my blog Leading Change here. 

The voluntary sector is a vital resource in any community. But I believe that doesn't have to come at the cost of your own health, happiness, or work/life balance. And Where the Mind Grows creates spaces to help you grow confidence, nurture psychological safety, and cultivate sustainable well-being strategies for people and planet health. 

So why Nature?

Nature is not just a place to hold our sessions. The Natural world is something we see as a 'co-facilitator' in our approach to change and personal growth. Finding solutions and discovering ways to do things differently.

Being in Nature has some amazing benefits for our mind and body, helping us reduce stress, increase focus, and ignite creative thinking. (And igniting the neuroscience geek within as we learn to understand ourselves in Nature).


Nature has 3.8  billion of years experience handling change, enhancing communication, working collaboratively, and finding strategies to thrive in the most complex circumstances. (So it makes for a great mentor in the world of leadership too). 

Perhaps like me, you see the impact on our health and happiness in this fast-paced world. Our current strategies and systems are unsustainable. I believe that learning to look after our own well-being in work and life enhances our capacity to care for the wider world, too. 

The Where the Mind Grows Approach: Combining Neuroscience (how our mind works), eco-psychology (being part of) Biomimicry (learning from Nature), and Regenerative Leadership (Living Systems thinking), with facilitated learning and development through a coaching approach. Our sessions are creative, wild, and engaging group spaces where we collectively draw on an 'ecosystem' of shared resources and peer learning to enhance your leadership well-being and the well-being of your team or organisation. Valuing your uniqueness and recognising you as an active contributor to enhancing the health of the sector. JK is an open, compassionate, and wildly creative coach. 

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Are these sessions for me?

Time is precious, and investing in some time for yourself is a BIG important deal.

So you need to feel confident this is time well spent. 

Down to Earth is delivered in collaboration with Community First Yorkshire - to support, nurture, develop, and enhance the well-being of the voluntary sector leaders across Yorkshire and the Humber. The sessions are aimed to be 'down to earth' and suitable for leaders of a range of experiences and backgrounds. 

These are not 'fluffy' well-being sessions. Instead, offering an opportunity for open, evidence-based, and practical exploration to help you lead with greater confidence and capacity in your roles and teams.  JK has experience in coaching and facilitating sessions that enable a range of leaders (in experience, background, and diversity) to engage. Down to Earth offers inclusive spaces & content focusing on personal development & leadership skills. 

Prioritising mental,  and physical well-being, & confidence as a Leader in the sector and beyond. When you attend the Down to Earth project sessions, you will be an active part of the learning 'ecosystem' which enhances each session, drawing not only on facilitated session content but on the wealth of knowledge & experience of your leadership peers. 

Time out and engaging with Nature offers you a change of scene and a different perspective in which to explore your leadership and rebalance your well-being.

The content has been curated following consultation with leaders in the sector (March 23) to help identify key challenges and development opportunities for Leaders. 

Programme schedule & registration


Session One: Leadership Well-being Ramble
Thursday 24th August 2023 - Hole of Horcum - 10:00am-14.30/15:00pm

 Summary of Session:

A group walk with other leaders, starting and ending at Hole of Horcum, North Yorkshire - Led by Walk/Expedition Business Coach Ant from Mountain Boardroom, and co-facilitated with JK of Where the Mind Grows. 

A 14KM/8 Mile (approx.) hike on varied ground and terrain, suitable for medium/moderate fitness levels. 

Throughout the route, we will share a range of reflective questions and resources to help inspire group connection and conversations. Leaving with new intentions, actions, and opportunities for well-being. As well as benefiting from taking part in the activity for physical and mental health. Not your usual setting for personal development. So a great opportunity to seek the benefits of evidenced-based Nature-inspired approaches for mind, body, and leadership.

Who is it for?

Leaders in the sector looking to combine personal development and well-being, based or delivering projects and services in the region of North Yorkshire & The Humber. Rewild and re-energise your leadership mind. Beneficial for a diverse range of leaders & leadership experience.  For those looking to take part in active, engaging personal development. Leaders who would like more connection with peers in the sector. And for those looking for a new challenge to boost confidence and well-being. If you have a current personal challenge or goal as a leader, this session will also give you ample opportunity for reflective head space to explore solutions to. 

Benefits, Outcomes & Personal Development Opportunities 

For Mind & Body 

  • Boosts energy, & motivation, 

  • Reduces stress & anxiety, 

  • Supports a healthier sleep routine, 

  • Supports mobility & physical fitness,

  •  Creates happy hormones through movement & connection. 

For personal development 

  • Offers creative time for reflection. A challenge to increase your confidence. A chance to connect and learn with peers. Supports problem-solving and decision-making. Collaboration and teamwork skills with your fellow walkers. Develops emotional intelligence skills. Understanding the benefits of walking for team well-being culture and how to bring it to your team/organisation. Leave with some clear and simple intentions to enhance your workplace well-being. 


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Session Two: Valuing Leadership Well-being
Wednesday 20th September 2023 - Little Seed Field, Nr Ripon HG4 3PU - 12:30-16:00pm

Summary of Session:

Join other leaders from across the sector as you prioritise some valuable time for well-being & personal development. The session combines a 90-minute workshop, followed by a two-hour woodcraft session, leaving you with practical resources to help find focus in the busy day and a beautiful hand-crafted item for yourself as a result of this more 'hands-on' nature-inspired activity. Facilitated by JK McQuinn (Founder of Where the Mind Grows) with Woodcraft activity by Thrive Outside CIC. Valuing a range of routes to well-being to enhance your role and approach as Leaders. (In registering for this event, you are committing to take part in both elements of the session). This session runs in and connected with Nature at the site at Little Seed Field. 

Who is it for?

Leaders in the sector looking to combine personal development and well-being, based or delivering projects and services in the region of North Yorkshire & The Humber. 

You will have a current personal need/interest in enhancing well-being for yourself, your team, or your organisation. And be looking to engage in activities that offer personal development in your role. 

The experience, whilst not your usual leadership growth setting, aims to provide a range of practical resources for leadership inspired by Nature. The session focuses on ways to reduce stress and enhance your values through a values-focused activity to help you discover your way to maintain a healthier, happy workplace culture for yourself and others. Our practical woodcraft activity will help you value time for creativity and focus. As you take part in this creative skills session. Evidence-based Nature-inspired approaches for mind, body, and leadership

Benefits, Outcomes & Personal Development Opportunities

  • A practical set of values resources, with a clear approach of how to find balance and focus, 

  • Clarity of how your individual and team values can be a 'living' part of your well-being culture, working from the inside out,  

  • Increased confidence to create healthier boundaries, through your values resources,

  • An engaged practical crafting activity to help you focus, rebalance, and reconnect with yourself,

  • Time in a beautiful nature setting to support your body & mind to reset, reducing stress and increasing relaxation and inspire creativity & innovation, 

  • A practical woodcraft object created by yourself,

  • Time to connect with other leaders in your sector, reducing the isolation of leadership roles. 


Session Two

Session Three: Finding Focus & Calm 
Tuesday 10th October 2023 - Bank Woods, Make it Wild, Summerbridge, HG3 4JR -09:30am-13.00pm

Summary of Session:

A leadership development workshop focusing on managing time, energy, and 'mind clutter' in the busy day-to-day. Helping you to enhance your well-being & avoid burnout in the challenge and change of your role. 

With focus on realistic approaches to help reclaim increased work/life balance and an introduction to the Natural principles of Observation, Connection, Purpose, and Resilience to help you rebalance and find focus in the 'stormiest' situations.  

JK from Where the Mind Grows leads the first part of the session from within the ancient woods of Bank Woods, exploring time and energy with strategies to help you declutter, gain clarity on small and powerful changes for yourself, and 'compost' through nature-inspired approaches for leadership.  Letting go and composting old habits, beliefs & burdens. 

From there, our session together will delve deeper into relaxation and mindfulness with a Natural Mindfulness session delivered by Helen at Make it Wilds beautiful rewilding site. Evidenced-based Nature-inspired approaches for mind, body and leadership. 

Who is it for?

Leaders in the sector, looking to combine personal development and well-being, based or delivering projects and services in the region of North Yorkshire & The Humber. 

You will see the benefit of exploring a range of resources to help you (and your team) find focus and create calmer, clearer working conditions in the hustle and bustle of work and life. You may be looking for ways to manage time more effectively or for ways to reduce stress and increase a better balance into your working culture. 

Benefits, Outcomes & Personal Development Opportunities 

  • Gain understanding of the neuroscience behind time and energy and how this impacts well-being culture, confidence and psychological safety,

  • Increase confidence & understanding on how to create calmer conditions, that reduce stress and increase self-efficacy and boost confidence, 

  • Explore the shifts in your body and mind when you invite more calm and presence into your day, 

  • Leave with small, yet powerful changes that are realistic, effective, and sustainable in your ever-changing roles,

  • A range of resources (for yourself or your team) to help with de-cluttering and letting go - to support effective time management and prioritisation,

  • Experience the psychological and physical benefits of time in Nature (Attention restoration theory).


Session 3

Thursday 19th October 2023 - Bank Woods, Make it WildHG3 4JR 09:30am-12:30pm

Summary of Session:

Join a Nature-Inspired exploration; enhancing your individual and team well-being and future-proofing sustainable wellness strategies to enhance your well-being culture. 

As we begin to shift into the contemplative phase of Autumn this is the ideal time to explore this insightful perspective of well-being's seasons and cycles.  

JK ( Founder of Where the Mind Grows) facilitates a three-hour session (with breaks) amongst the autumnal nature backdrop of Bank Woods ancient woodland. As we explore a 'living-systems' approach to well-being and consider how the seasons within nature, your business, & project cycles, and for individuals too, inform and impact the overall well-being trends of your team/organisation.  

You'll map out a reflective understanding of the 'seasonal' shifts and consider a range of strategies you can adopt, personally and within your work culture, that support a well-being strategy that responds to individuals and the collective well-being needs within the eb and flow of work, life, and nature. A warm vegan-friendly soup will be served before the session ends to celebrate the autumnal surrounds. 

Who is it for?

Leaders in the sector looking to combine personal development and well-being. You will be based or delivering projects and services in the region of North Yorkshire & The Humber. Leaders who are interested in enhancing team well-being culture, as well as curious to learn more about regenerative and living systems approaches to leadership.  The session is also relevant for anyone who wants to adapt personal well-being strategies to respond to changes in work, life, and nature. Leaders with multiple team line management/responsibilities will gain new perspectives on managing well-being across a range of teams. Evidenced-based Nature-inspired approaches for mind, body, and leadership.

Benefits, Outcomes & Personal Development Opportunities

  • A greater understanding of how nature's patterns and the 'rhythm of life' can impact your well-being culture,

  • A tool to help you understand the cycles, patterns, and 'seasons' of your internal work culture, projects, and own leadership style,

  • A set of strategies to help you (individually and as a team) to adapt and respond to challenge & change,

  • Clarity on the potential tensions and challenges for your own and your team's well-being and some simple approaches and opportunities to support change, to enhance well-being, 

  • The benefit on mind and body while you engage in nature as part of this session (reducing stress and supporting inner and outer connection and confidence), 

  • An introduction to concepts aligned with regenerative leadership & living systems thinking to enhance the impact and purpose of your leadership role. 


session 4
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Make your event registration

There are various options to sign up for each event across this page. You can also do this by selecting the links below and completing the short registration form to sign up to each of the individual Down to Earth events. You can register for as much of the programme as you like (from one to all four sessions). You will need to complete a separate registration for each event you wish to attend. Please note all the of the programme is held onsite at a nature-connected venue; please ensure you let us know about any medical conditions, accessibility, mobility needs, or any dietary or allergy requirements when you sign up. 

It's also helpful for us to be aware of your learning style, needs, or any questions you have for us that will support the safe and inclusive engagement in sessions. 

You may be charged for this event if you do not attend without prior notice being given.

You must be registered to attend a session - Spaces are limited per session. 

You will receive a welcome email from Where the Mind Grows with information on the session a minimum of two weeks in advance of each event. (Please ensure is added to your contacts so you receive this). 

This project is delivered in partnership with Community First Yorkshire. 

Please email for queries. 

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Plus other opportunities for nature inspired resources, events and information for people & planet health. 

"Perfection. The attention to detail and thought that has gone into planning makes such a lovely, comfortable experience. You quickly create a very open and warm environment where you can go deep - sometimes without realising."

"Your hectic life as a leader is put on pause when you're given time and attention to grow as an individual within beautiful surroundings with wonderful people. I would recommend this experience to everyone!"
"I now see valuing my well-being as an essential part of being a leader and as being a parent. I think I viewed it as a luxury before but it's now a non-negotiable for me. As soon as I let this slip I can see the impact and now have the tools to be able to refocus and look at what I need to change."

Hidden from plain site. 

This project is exclusive to leaders across the CVSE in Yorkshire & the Humber in partnership with Community First Yorkshire. For that reason, you are accessing a hidden page on our website and may not find it shows up in a standard search. Add this page to your browser favourites. In case you want to revisit it!

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