Research shows that the closer we get to nature, the happier we are, the more worthwhile life seems, and the more we are willing to take action to help our wildlife and the environment.
Please join us and help connect more people with nature in Shropshire.
-Paul Newman, Nature Connection lead, Shropshire Good Food Partnership
The Nature Connection working group is focussed on practical actions:
to inspire, enable and encourage a greater connection with nature for all residents of Shropshire.
We believe this will be good for personal health, good for the community, and good for the planet.
We have three focus areas:
1. Working Together: Support 3 nature connection projects, encourage collaborations, and get our hands dirty!
2. More Places: Inspire and enable more green spaces to host activities that connect people with nature.
3. Better Health: Improve access to nature for those with physical or mental health constraints.
1. Working Together
A dedicated volunteer group looking to increase the wellbeing benefits and the sustainability of their community growing space
A collaboration of growers and producers, working together to grow food for local consumption, and create a place for learning, biodiversity and wellbeing.
Nancy grows food, makes beautiful, wildlife friendly gardens, and shares her infectious joy for all things plant related in workshops, courses and events.
2. More connections with nature
We want to work with green space owners, large estates and farms, small holdings and community gardens, to open up more places and activities that build a greater connection with nature for people of Shropshire. If you have a green space, and you’d like help in opening up to more visitors for that connect-with-nature experience, then do get in touch.
We’re supporting the 2022 Shropshire Love Nature Festival team, in collaboration with Shropshire Wildlife Trust and Shropshire Climate Action.
The festival runs over four weeks of July and August, supporting and promoting over 70 events across the county.
Most events are free to attend, and offer a variety of opportunities to connect with nature, learn new skills, or find ways to act against climate change or food poverty.
3. Better Health through connecting
Simply noticing the good things in nature each day for a week brings sustained and clinically significant improvements in mental health. There is now a solid body of evidence from dozens of studies that have shown having a strong sense of connection to nature helps people feel good and function well. (1)
We are active on two projects to bring better health and well-being through greater connection with nature:
Access to Social (Green) Prescribing
For many green space owners (and members of SGFP), connecting to the Social Prescribing network is not as straight forward as it might be.
We are working with local health organisations, charities and social prescribing development officers to share our members experiences, and bring about greater understanding of social prescribing benefits and systems. We hope this will inform our members and help more of them open up their green spaces for social prescribing beneficiaries.
'Digital Connect with Nature' Project
When accessible, nature can provide a fantastic stimulus and experience for everyone, and especially for those with learning difficulties or disabilities.
We are working with Shropshire Council Adult Social Care, and several outdoor activity providers across the county, to capture some of these experiences in digital form. We hope this can then be used to inspire
farms and other green spaces to work with service providers to offer accessible outdoor activities for those with learning or physical constraints.