Abstract: Ecotherapy and Park Prescriptions healing through nature

Hello, my name is Alexis Jenkins and I am a sophomore at William & Mary. I am an anthropology and environmental science double major and this summer I will be assisting Professor Dorothy Ibes with her research in the Parks Research Lab.

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Abstract: Ecotherapy interventions encouraging healing through nature

Ecotherapy is a form of psychology that allows nature to encourage growth and healing. This healing can be in the form of stress, cognitive fatigue, or mental illness. Healing with nature has become more important in recent years because humans have broken their deep relationship with nature. Human connection with nature is important because of a term Edward Wilson created called “biophilia,” which describes humans’ innate desire to connect with nature and other life. Recent studies have indicated that ecotherapy practices have reduced stress, depression and anxiety, and have increased pro-social behavior and overall well-being. Some interventions include horticultural therapy and animal-assisted therapy, while more commonplace ecotherapy practices include mindfulness walks, learning more about local nature, spending more time outside in general, and adding more greenspace to an indoor environment.

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End Summer, Enter Fall

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Back home – but not quite done with research

Like most of the students living on campus this summer, I’ve now moved back home for a couple weeks before the semester starts up again.  Though I’m back home, my research is not done yet.

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Park Rx Program

 

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