Nature for Wellbeing
We believe that everyone deserves to live in a healthy, wildlife-rich natural world and experience the joy of wildlife every day: for the wellbeing of people and wildlife.
Why does this matter?
More and more people are living their lives indoors. We do not get to spend enough time in nature because often, there is nowhere nearby that is easily accessible. Those that have the least access to nature also have the worst levels of physical health and mental wellbeing.
Seeing birds near our homes, walking through green spaces filled with wild flowers and along rivers that are clean and clear reduces stress, fatigue, anxiety and depression.
Decision-makers are not making the link between nature’s recovery and our health, wellbeing & prosperity.
The Wildlife Trusts offer a different way of living. One which leads to happier, healthier lives and thriving wildlife.
My quiet life
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Those that have the least access to nature also have the worst levels of physical health and mental wellbeing
What we're doing
We want to make socialising, volunteering, exercise and play in wildlife-rich natural places central to everyone’s daily life.
Volunteering at the reserve helps me keep fit and meet new people and it’s also great to see so much wildlife
Wild wellbeing on your local patch
We run a range of activities – from weekly volunteering groups, to informative talks and family events. What unites them is that they are great ways to mix with people from all backgrounds and ages.
95% of Wildlife Trust volunteers with low wellbeing reported an improvement in 6 weeks, which continued over the following 6 weeksUniversity of Essex
Turning lives around with Green Care
Daily contact with nature is linked to better health, reduced levels of chronic stress, reductions in obesity and improved concentration.
Engaging with the natural environment is also a great leveller. The wildlife trusts are rooted in their local communities and neighbourhoods, so we can help more people access local nature spots, reaching out to the full breadth of the people in the communities where we work.
We work in partnership with health and social care organisations, to increase their reach and better help the people they work with.
Want to delve a little deeper?
From 2015-17 the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Essex carried out research on behalf of The Wildlife Trusts, to:
Study the mental wellbeing of volunteers on Wildlife Trust projects.
Collect information from projects across The Wildlife Trusts to evaluate their impact on people’s health and wellbeing.
Review the scientific literature, to investigate whether nature-rich environments had any specific impacts on people’s health and wellbeing.
The findings are particularly important for people who live with a mental health condition. The research showed that nature volunteering had the most significant impact on those with low levels of mental wellbeing at the start of the project. Download and read these reports below.