A play worker at The Children’s Centre has been short-listed for a BBC Countryfile Magazine award.
Play development officer Chris Gregory is one of only five nominees in the running for the Professional Wild Hero accolade which is open to nominations from the British Isles.
The winner will be chosen by public poll on www.countryfile.com – the voting deadline being noon this Sunday August 31.
The Professional Wild Hero Award is for someone who works with children that has gone beyond the call of duty to open youngsters’ eyes to the natural world around them, and is open to teachers, social workers, healthcare professionals, and play workers.
It is part of the Octavia Hill Awards scheme which are organised by the National Trust, the Wild Network and BBC Countryfile Magazine.
The awards celebrate people who work to protect and enhance green spaces for wildlife and local communities.
Chris has been nominated for his work with The Children’s Centre’s Out2Play scheme which encourages children to interact with the outdoors through play.
He said: ‘It would be great to bring this award back to the Isle of Man as a reward for everyone who has contributed to Out2Play. Winning this award would also highlight the fantastic opportunities which the Isle of Man provides for children.’
Some voters have already left positive comments on the Countryfile website in support of Chris, with parents describing how he and the Out2Play scheme have inspired their children to get outside and have fun, and spend less time playing computer games.
Chris also devised a ‘March2Work’ scheme to encourage both children and adults to spend the month of March travelling to work using children’s toys and games.
Leading by example, in 2012 and 2013 he commuted to work every day during the month by space hopper and pogo stick.
To vote go to http://www.countryfile.com/poll/octavia-hill-awards-professional-wild-hero-shortlist