It isn’t a myth – spending time in nature is proven to help improve people’s health and well-being.
To celebrate these amazing benefits, Active Devon and Devon County Council, on behalf of the Devon Local Nature Partnership, have launched their annual campaign, Naturally Healthy May. The campaign encourages people of all ages to step outdoors together, connect with nature and breathe in the best of Devon’s fresh air.
During the month, events and activities have been arranged across the county by partners working in health, well-being, education, community and the environment to allow everyone to join in and try something new.
Active Devon and Devon County Council, on behalf of the Devon Local Nature Partnership (Devon LNP), will also be sharing on social media ideas and information on how to be ‘naturally healthy’– from getting outside for a bike ride to bird watching and listening to bird song, to swimming in the sea and gardening and how to best enjoy the benefits it can bring.
Plus, there is a Naturally Healthy photo competition running from the 1st–31st of May for children and adults to take part in. At the same time, exploring, enjoying and valuing the natural environment, why not take a photo to capture the experience and be in with a chance to win a prize.
Active Devon’s Tom Mack said: ‘From chilling in the park to a stroll on the beach or a short walk to the shops, spending time outdoors has been linked to a stream of benefits like sleeping better, less stress, feeling happier, with increased energy and positive mental well-being.’
‘In Devon, we have so many opportunities on our doorstep, and Naturally Healthy May is here to make it easy for people to get out of their homes and connect with the nature around them.’
‘This year, we will be engaging even more with different age groups, from children to grandparents, encouraging them all to enjoy time in nature to reconnect with each other while being active.’
Steve Brown, Devon County Council’s director of Public Health, said: ‘Devon has so many opportunities for people to get outside and connect with nature. We have two beautiful coastlines and wonderful green space in-between. Many people have spent time outside as a coping mechanism throughout the pandemic and have recognised the positive benefits to their health and well-being.’
‘Communities have responded to the need for access to local outdoor space, creating activities including community gardens, well-being walks, forest bathing and wild swimming.’
‘In May, organisations across Devon are working together on the #NaturallyHealthyMay campaign, hosting events and sharing activities people can do by themselves to help reconnect with nature and access the benefits to their health. I urge you to get involved and try something new, visit somewhere different and share your experiences with us.’