#PositiveInstagramPeople (14/09/2020)

Welcome to the start of a new week, and indeed another installment of our new blog series for Mondays, #PositiveInstagramPeople. This is our weekly slot where we shine light on an amazing social media account to follow that’s bringing something positive, uplifting or inspiring to other’s feeds.

The feedback we had from last week’s launch from you all was really well received, so thank you – it’s pleasing to see so many of you feel like we do on this subject!

Don’t forget if there’s an amazing account you think we should follow – and feature in a future blog – you can message us on our Instagram or leave your comments below. And now, to this week’s featured positive social media star…

NAME: Lauren Blake

INSTAGRAM HANDLE: @laurenoutdoors1

WHY SHOULD I BE FOLLOWING THEM?

I first met Lauren eight years ago in 2012, when we filmed together for a TV documentary that Olly Murs was making about his first UK arena tour. She’s a lovely lady, and since that time, we’ve stayed in touch, and she’s gone onto do some amazing things.

Lauren has a really keen interest and love of nature and wildlife, so it should come as no surprise to tell you that she is an ‘Our Stour’ officer on the River Stour in Kent, as part of the Kentish Stour Countryside Partnership.

As well as this, she’s part of an incredible organisation called Anna Outdoors, which aims to give young people of school age in Kent more interest and awareness in their local environment – in particular rivers and waterways – through things like outdoor learning events and forest schools.

She has even appeared on the BBC One show River Walks, talking about her work as an ‘Our Stour’ officer. Her Instagram feed is amazing to follow, on several counts.

Firstly she shares some incredible photos of nature that she takes not just in Kent but also in other areas of natural interest in the British Isles. Obviously with the lockdown, getting connected with nature as a way of rebalancing our mental well-being has never been more important.

Her feed is a gentle reminder of what amazing living things are around us out in the British countryside. Secondly, she also uses her feed to highlight environmental issues, particularly surrounding river pollution and microplastics.

The latter is especially a growing concern, in terms of our ecosystems and these entering ours and other creatures’ food chains, and just by sharing what she does, Lauren’s helping shed light and bring importance to a subject that affects us all.

But above all else, her account is one that I can always rely on to go when I need some beautiful nature to look at, especially on those days where I can’t get myself to a green open space – which isn’t often admittedly – but it’s a great restorer. Keep it up Lauren!

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