mental health awareness week 2021

Here at Quo Vadis Trust we’ll once again be supporting Mental Health Awareness Week 2021, that runs next week from the 10th – 16th May. The annual event is run by The Mental Health Foundation, and is an opportunity for the whole of the UK to focus on achieving good mental health. Started 21 years ago, each year the Foundation continues to set the theme, organise and host the Week, and in turn the event has grown to become one of the biggest awareness weeks across the UK and globally.

This year’s theme is ‘nature’, and next week we’ll be sharing some of the activities, past and present, that QVT run for our clients that fit well within this theme! These activities include our much-loved gardening sessions and herbal walks, both of which have such a positive impact on our clients.

Mark Rowland, Chief Executive of the Mental Health Foundation, shares why ‘nature’ has been chosen as this year’s theme:

“Nature is so central to our psychological and emotional health, that it’s almost impossible to realise good mental health for all without a greater connection to the natural world. For most of human history, we lived as part of nature. It is only in the last five generations that so many of us have lived and worked in a context that is largely separated from nature. And it is only since a 1960s study in the US found that patients who were treated in hospitals with a view of nature recovered faster, that science has started to unpack the extraordinary health benefits.

During Mental Health Awareness Week 2021, we will pull together the evidence that demonstrates the powerful benefits of nature for our mental health. We will look at nature’s unique ability to not only bring consolation in times of stress, but also increase our creativity, empathy and a sense of wonder.It turns out that it is not just being in nature but how we open ourselves up and interact with nature that counts. We will show that even small contacts with nature can reduce feelings of social isolation and be effective in protecting our mental health, and preventing distress”

Our own Ingrid Tennessee, CEO of Quo Vadis Trust says:

“Lockdown has had a big impact on people’s ability to maintain socialising and outdoor activity. Working from home decreased exercise time for those who had to walk to their transportation links if they were not driving . It also reduced physical activity for the general population, as gyms and outdoor leisure facilities were closed. I certainly found solitude in long walks, cycling and in just going out for a stroll around the block, at lunchtimes,  schedules permitting. We know how much more active our wildlife have been as roads quietened and nature had a chance to show off her beauty in the flora and fauna around us!

Just going out into the sunlight does so much more than boost vitamin D levels. At QVT we continue to support our clients to appreciate the benefits of being in nature and going outdoors. We have moved art and coffee mornings outdoors, weather permitting and our gardening groups continue. There is nothing like a good old garden workout , to enhance sleep”

We look forward to sharing more with you next week- watch this space!

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