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Blue Prescribing draws on London's wetlands to improve mental health

Research by YouGov, released by the UK's Mental Health Foundation, states that even small moments in nature can be effective in protecting people's mental health and preventing distress. For 65% of those surveyed, being near water had the greatest positive impact. Which is why the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust will be running a nature-based health program — Blue Prescribing — at its London center starting this summer.

The six-week wetlands course was developed in partnership with the Mental Health Foundation, and will include hands-on activities in 'watery' natural settings. The project's aim is to enable people to make nature a continuing element in caring for their own mental health. Making the program accessible to all, Blue Prescribing is fully funded by Simplyhealth, a UK health solutions company.

Innovation of the day

The NHS includes 'green social prescribing' as part of its plan to transform mental health services. In December, it awarded GBP 5.77 million to seven sites that will test how people's mental wellbeing can be improved by connecting with nature; the sites will focus on communities hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, including those living in deprived areas and BAME communities.

Blue Prescribing ties in with what we've dubbed Mindcraft: how organizations can equip consumers with the tools needed to thrive in an uncertain future. Check out the briefing for more examples of how brands are helping people build mental and emotional resilience!