Our Story


A dedicated group of nature preschool directors and teachers conceived of ERAFANS as we struggled to find support and local training. Founding director Monica Wiedel-Lubinski reached out to leaders from across the Eastern region with a call to action and all of them rose to the occasion. 

These founding members forged ERAFANS in 2016, one in purpose, to provide support, services, and inspiration to nature-based early childhood educators with the ultimate goal of giving more young children meaningful experiences in nature. We incorporated as a non-profit in November 2016, and became a 501c3 non-profit organization in 2017.

The nature preschool movement continues to flourish and there is an ever-growing need for relevant professional development opportunities for those of us working in nature preschools, forest kindergartens, and other nature-based early learning settings. ERAFANS is thrilled to be part of the solution!


We offer professional services for teachers, naturalists, administrators and others working in nature-based early childhood education. Ultimately, we serve young children birth through age eight by providing inspiration and expertise for teachers of the nature-based programs they attend.

We support programs such as nature preschools, forest kindergartens, nature-based in-home childcare centers, elementary schools and the like. Our reach is inclusive of all early childhood learning settings, but focuses on emerging and established nature-based programs.

Our geographic focus is the Eastern region of the U.S. By narrowing our focus we can facilitate localized training, often in driving distance. This in-state networking helps facilitate a broad web of support in the Eastern region. Of course, everyone is welcome to attend our programs no matter where you live!

ERAFANS is guided by a group of nature-based early childhood education experts from across the eastern region. Learn more about our founding members and Board of Directors here.

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software