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High Impact Social Groups for Children

 We address confidence, social skills, and physical ability while having fun together in the woods of North Carolina!

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Let’s be honest, children today spend too much time inside, by themselves, using screens.

Meaning kids of all abilities are missing out on important social, developmental, and physical skills. In fact, the rise in social and emotional problems can be attributed to fewer social and outdoor play opportunities.

Meaning kids are...

  • Missing opportunities to practice important social skills like teamwork, communication, or problem-solving that happen naturally when playing with friends outdoors.  


  • Experiencing decreased strength, balance, and coordination from lack of movement through natural environments like trees, creeks, and uneven trails. 


  • Facing higher rates of depression and anxiety because they’re not learning to slow down and experience the wind through the leaves or refreshing outdoor air. 

These aren’t just extra experiences, these are foundational skills children need to practice to learn.   

But, the answer is fairly simple. Get outside more! Especially if your child is facing social, physical, or emotional challenges.

That’s why our social groups are about being outdoors and actually doing the activities needed for development. 

Your child will practice skills with other children, in real social situations, using fun physical challenges. 

Our Doctors

Your child will practice skills with other children, in real social situations, using fun physical challenges. 

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Image by Annie Spratt
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Take full advantage of the therapeutic benefits of the outdoors – to move, to experience different sensations, to interact with an environment that is ever-changing so your child meets their goals while having fun and improving mental health. 

Go above and beyond to help you feel supported at home – so you get real results (because you only get so far with a few hours of therapy a week). 

Develop a connection with a natural place – to foster physical and mental health, as well as a desire to protect our environment.  

Offer peace of mind with program options presented upfront so there’s no ambiguity around time commitment, communication, or next steps for your child. The information and support you need is all accessible within our program.

To make sure nothing gets missed and parents and children have an amazing experience, we’ve included everything needed as all-inclusive programs. Select the level of support that meets your needs.

How it Works

Groups meet in the woods and open spaces of our beautiful Hillsborough location. Here we create opportunities for children to explore nature, move, and play together while participating in occupational and physical therapy.

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Who are social groups good for?

Our groups are targeted for families who value a connection to nature, experiential learning, and support. 


Groups are designed for children ages 4-11 who: 


  • Need to hone social, physical, or emotional skills.

  • Are able to work on skills outside rather than in more structured, indoor environments. 

  • Don’t need one-to-one support to function in a group or safely walk through nature. 

  • Able to follow basic directions with minimal support. 

  • Are able to toilet independently.

  • Are ready to have fun and get a little muddy! 


Imagine your child being excited about their next therapy visit. It’s so fun – it doesn’t feel like therapy! Note to mention you love the added benefit of your child coming home with better self-regulation, physical skills, and confidence. 

Outdoor group therapy to develop new skills and connections with each other and the natural world.  


Groups are co-facilitated by an OT and a PT. Each brings the ability and expertise to address different areas with your child for a more complete experience.  


Following the research supported Contigo Approach for outdoor therapy, each session of group includes:


  • Structured activity designed to address the group members’ individual goals

  • Snack time to practice daily living and social skills

  • Literacy activity

  • Free play to encourage problem-solving, creative thinking, and exploration

Using this model, we’re able to address a range of skills:

  • Coordination

  • Flexibility

  • Unstructured play 

  • Cooperation

  • Social skills

  • Problem-solving 

  • Strength and endurance

  • Motor planning

  • Balance

  • Tolerating a variety of sensory experiences

  • Appreciation of nature and each other

  • Safety awareness

  • Fine motor skills

Each of these skills is critical for success in everyday life.

How to Get Started

  • Free 30 minute clarity call 

  • Intake and goal setting

  • Get assigned to the right group for your child’s needs

How Outdoor Social Groups Are Offered

Join us in the fall or spring semester for outdoor groups.  


By offering groups by semester, we ensure group participants and therapists have ample time to build relationships with each other. 


More than just weekly sessions for your child, we help you feel more confident and connected as a parent. 

  • Weekly 2-hour social groups, 14 sessions (Fall semester) /16 sessions (Spring semester)

  • One 30 minute phone call or video chat per semester

  • Collaborative goal-setting process 

  • Written progress report each semester

  • Online Platform 

  • Access to all Running Cedar Community Events 

  • Access to the Running Cedar Lending Library 

  • Our Private Curated Facebook Group: Outside Fun For Everyone 


Investment: $XXX/ Semester

Outdoor Groups Include:

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All the Elements for Success in our Group Program

  • Group Sessions – This is not your typical social group. Each 2-hour session includes both planned and open-ended activities. Activities are designed to encourage your child’s engagement with nature, peers, and physical development.


  • Online Platform for the Group – Here is where we’ll share weekly pictures and updates from our sessions in the woods. It also makes it easy to access our tips and group updates, and fosters communication with your child’s therapists.  


  • Resource Lending Library – Our favorite handouts, books, and items so you get access to information or can borrow an item without needing to invest your own money. 


  • Progress Report  – You won’t end our group session without knowing what was accomplished and what next steps are recommended. We provide a detailed progress report at the end of each semester for you to review and share with other team members. 


  • Collaborative Goal Setting  – Provides direction for what we worked on with your child in their group sessions. Together, we pick 2 goals per semester that matter the most to you and your child. This gives us enough focus to see results in daily life but leaves ample opportunities for experiential learning. 


  • Family Fun Events –  Be part of our encouraging community! We host quarterly, non-therapeutic social events for families at our property. Connect with other parents who understand your experiences, while your child interacts with other kids in a familiar outdoor setting.  


  • Private Curated Facebook Group: Outside Fun For Everyone  –  You’ll get access to our private Facebook group for RC families and other local families who face similar challenges and want to deepen their family’s connection to the natural world.


  • Parent Phone or Video Call – Learn about progress in the group and how to apply concepts at home. It’s so much easier to talk during a dedicated time so you can focus without your child listening. We’ve found parent calls to be one of the most powerful parts of our program.

Evaluation and Goal Setting for Groups

We customize groups based on each child’s needs and challenges. To be able to plan appropriately, we start with an evaluation to better understand your child. No prior assessment is required, but current educational, OT, PT and/or SLP assessments are beneficial to our collaborative planning and goal-setting process.


  1. You provide any current evaluations you would like to share with us




  1. We complete assessments designed for our groups 


From this initial evaluation, we collaborate with you and your child to come up with goals to work towards over the course of the semester. 

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Complete Package

Complete Package

It’s a therapy experience where you get more confidence for yourself and your child.

Our program includes everything you need to succeed: skilled therapy interventions within a group, community support, and incredible resources. All taking place within the therapeutic outdoors setting of Hillsborough, North Carolina.

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