“Without mental health there can be no true physical health” – Dr. Brock Chisholm – WHO Director
We know that being outside in natural environments is good for people’s mental well-being. Similarly, being able to see trees from a hospital window reduces recovery time – Green space in urban environments is associated with long-term reduction in mortality, notably linked to air pollution. We think an holistic approach of integrating access to nature into healthcare is an important opportunity, and we’re here to support health professionals who want to do the same.
What is this project about?
Re-Connect provides a safe, person-centred environment for health professionals and service users to explore the benefits of engaging in practical activities in green spaces. We work with people who have a wide range of health conditions – from adults in inpatient mental health provision, young people at risk of psychosis, to people who’ve suffered traumatic brain injuries and strokes. We’ve seen first hand how woodland programmes have a positive impact on patient outcomes, and for several years we’ve been undertaking research to show the efficacy of the approach.
In conjunction with Swansea University we’ve developed a set of monitoring tools which assess the positive impact of our programmes on health & wellbeing. As well as significant increases in physical health, our research shows that Down to Earth participants experience decreases in anxiety & depression equivalent to a course of anti-depressants. Find out more here
We have 2 further intakes of groups this year. These will take place in September & November 2019. Groups normally run one day a week for 8 weeks. We start around 10:30 and finish at 2:30 depending on participant needs.
What do I need?
Not a lot! If you represent Swansea Bay Health Board then your service users can access Re-Connect.
- A minimum of 8 service users who would like to access the programme
- You need to be able to get to us. Buses do run but the service is infrequent, and you’ll have to walk for about 20 minutes. Car-sharing is probably the favourite option.
- A packed lunch. Don’t forget your sandwiches, we’ll provide the tea and biscuits!
- Wear clothes that you feel comfortable in, and that you don’t mind getting dirty. You’ll be outside quite a lot, so dress for the weather! If you don’t have waterproofs don’t worry, we have plenty you can use
If you can’t meet these criteria, we can still help your service users – get in touch to find out more
Who is funding this project?
Re-Connect is funded by Natural Resources Wales (NRW). NRW is the Welsh Government body responsible for ensuring the natural resources of Wales are managed as effectively as possible.