DD Charity Blog

A place for us to highlight the great work of charitable groups we are supporting with donations of DD Hammocks Gear each month. We are proud to be working with community engagement programs, mental health charities and more to provide equipment and easy access to the great outdoors for those in need.

28 March 2023

DD Charity Update - March 2023

By Vikki

It's the month of March and Spring has officially sprung!

This month we have been working with UK non profit CIC the Leg Up Project - an organisation founded by Royal Marines and led by veterans. The Leg Up Project works to provide various programmes (such as nature and adventure therapy, outdoors activities such as wild swimming/walking/sailing, mental health first aid and other goal oriented workshops) primarily to aid in the support of male mental health, however they aim to provide assistance to all those that need it, particularly as they expand.

Read on below to read (and watch!) how the Leg Up Project works to develiver essential assistance to those in need with the help of the great outdoors!

Based in North West Leicestershire, The Leg Up Project is a social hub with the sole purpose of raising the holistic wellbeing and encouraging mental and spiritual growth of everyone involved; "At the heart of poor mental health lays a need for love & belonging, we maintain our community spirit through our ethos and understand that a healthy community heals."

We catch up with Tom, Project Development Lead for The Leg Up Project, who explains more about the goals of the LUP and services they provide:

"The LUP is a not for profit, community interest company (CIC) situated in NW Leicestershire that delivers, adventure therapy, and educational courses to promote an increase in wellbeing and healthy living. The organisation is veteran led and founded by former Royal Marine Commandos. We work with individuals of all ages from a diverse range of backgrounds, including those with addictions, mental health difficulties, homelessness, PTSD and more. We teach resourcefulness and outdoor skills combined with wellbeing coaching (counselling skills) and are the only people combining these two subject matters with amazing results thus far. We have affected over 1000 people from all walks of life with our unique combined adventure therapy. The organisation is currently led purely through volunteers’ time and does not turn over a project with the little cash raised going back into the project. We are currently seeking options of how we can continue the amazing work that we know we are doing.

We are expanding the project to work with and teach wider groups of young people outdoor education, navigation, bushcraft and more, entwined with our wellbeing and resilience education. This will give 8–18-year-olds a chance to access hands-on learning, content and fun that will help them develop physical skills together with their mindset whilst enjoying the outdoors and what it has to offer. We help develop people’s mental health by both a combinative and preventative approach, serving to help alleviate and prevent mental distress whilst building resilience in both mindset and survival skillset.

As mentioned, a number of those that utilise our project are impacted by a range of difficulties such as (but not limited to); mental health problems (commonly primary conditions such as anxiety and depression), relationship difficulties (breakdowns and breakups), emotional difficulties (containing, expressing, sharing, and understanding emotions), interpersonal issues (crossing boundaries, understanding the needs of others, loneliness) and general poor health (physical health). We help individuals by helping them understand themselves. We use a range of techniques and alternative methods to shape their interpersonal effectiveness, distress tolerance, emotional intelligence, mindfulness, physical health, overall subjective well being, and emotional regulation. This is done alongside outdoor education and adventure which helps people understand, reflect and learn things quicker and better than in a fully traditional classroom environment."

Using their new DD Charity edition Hammocks and Tarps, The Leg Up Project make quick work of getting folks out into nature!

"We ran a short day course for 6 men on the weekend. The first part of the day was navigation skills training and the second half of the day was practising and using the DD Charity hammocks / tarps that DD sent across. The guys that took part are built from a range of backgrounds such as emergency services, to ex army and construction. The intimate group was for team building to help the men who are part of the project to improve and increase their wellbeing. Thank you!"
 We hope that The Leg Up Project and its patrons continue to have many more adventures in the weeks and months to come!

Now that Spring is in full swing, we want to make sure that we can help as many people get out and explore more, all while experiencing the healing benefits of nature!

So, if you know of a charity, group or cause with a focus on the outdoors and a passion for helping those less fortunate get out into nature that would benefit from some free outdoor equipment plus a spot on the DD Charity Blog to showcase their work, we would love to hear from you!

Help us support even more people, and get involved by getting in touch with us via our DD Charity contact form.


If you liked this post feel free to share it:

About the writer


A regular on the hiking trails of Northern Scotland, Vikki loves nothing more than being in the great outdoors. When she's not pulling on her hiking boots or trail shoes, this DD Team Member can often be spotted in the gym or curled up at home with a sketchpad and pencil.

DD Charity Update - June 2024

Summer is here to stay and a heatwave is on the way - so lets get as many people as we can outdoors! This month we've partnered with The Ernest Cook Trust and The Outward Bound Trust; two local UK charities who have a long history of bringing everyone they can into nature! Read on to find out more!
Read more

Join us on Facebook