Mental Health Awareness Week takes place from 10th – 16th May and this years theme is nature.
During the long months of the pandemic millions of us turned to nature, taking walks was one of the top coping strategies and getting out in the green stuff is crucial to our mental health. Wider studies have shown that not only were people spending more time in nature during lockdown but they were noticing it more.
For most of human history, we have lived as part of nature. Its a constant reassurance and provides us with a sense of calm. There are powerful benefits of nature for our mental health and it has been proven to help patients in hospitals heal and recover quicker, nature can reduce stress, increase our creativity, empathy and sense of wonder.
Despite this many of us are not accessing or benefitting from nature. Teenagers in particular appear to be less connected and around 13% of UK households have no access to a garden. Local and national governments need to consider their role in making this a reality for everyone. Nature should accessible for us all and should be not undervalued in its important part it plays in our mental health.
Inspiring brand Equipp are passionate about supporting teenagers mental health, they offer gifts that are designed to make teens feel supported, loved and bursting with self-belief. The founders Anna and Louise feel strongly about the need to support teenage mental health so donate money from every sale to an amazing charity Hector’s House. Set up in memory of Hector Stringer after he took his own life at the age of 18, Hector’s House promotes open discussions around mental health issues to end stigma and prevent suicide by visiting schools, events and festivals to talk about mental health and promote healthy living.
Here are three things how you could get involved during Mental Health Awareness Week and #ConnectWithNature :
1. Experience Nature – take time and recognise nature around you. When you look closely its always full of surprises. This maybe taking care of a plant, listening to the birdsong, noticing the trees and wild flowers.
2. Share Nature – Take a photo, video or sound recording and share them to connect and inspire others. Use the hashtags #ConnectWithNature and #MentalHeathAwarenessWeek
3. Talk About Nature – Discuss nature with your family, friends, schools, workplaces or community. There are lots of charitys such as the Wildlife Trust which are a great source of information and inspiration on nature. Other ones to check out are:
We need nature as we know it helps improve our mental health and make us feel better about ourselves but it may not solve all mental health issues. If you need any help or support please contact the following: