Ecotherapy is about building a relationship with nature and with yourself...

EcoMinds: K&C Mind’s Ecotherapy programme

Ecotherapy is the name given to a wide range of programmes that aim to promote good mental and physical wellbeing through outdoor activity in a green environment.

Being able to connect with nature has positive mental health benefits. It has been shown that being more active in green environments can boost our mood and self-esteem far more than simple exercising alone.

Ecotherapy programmes can take place in rural and urban settings, such as parks, gardens, farms and woodlands. They can include activities:

  • where getting involved with nature is the main focus, e.g. a conservation project or community food growing
  • that are about experiencing nature, e.g., enjoying the views on a walk or cycling through some woodland

For many people, ecotherpay can be used to help existing mental health projects or as a preventative measure. For some, it has been beneficial in preventing the onset of mental ill-health, e.g. an episode of depression. It can be used alongside other treatments, such as talking therapies or medication - or on its own.

Kensington and Chelsea Mind’s EcoMind's programme runs three ecotherapy projects:

  • Level 1 City and Guilds training in Horticulture Skills
  • Environmental and wildlife conservation work experience at Meanwhile Wildlife Garden
  • Growing Minds: social and therapeutic horticulture in edibles and ornamentals

We also offer “green” work opportunities:

  • Working Minds: a social enterprise offering supported work opportunities in gardening and landscaping for graduates of our City and Guilds Horticulture course

We also have opportunities for arts and crafts and wellness actives such as Wellness Recovery Action Planning and workshops on staying well. Sessions are run by a trained horticulture leader and supported by peer volunteers.

  • Referrals can be taken from primary care professionals and community mental health teams
  • Applicants must have a GP or mental health professional registered to RBK&C
  • Applicants must be over 18