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June 13 at 2:00 pm - 3:15 pm

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Online webinar: How nature-based innovations can help to improve mental health of children and young people facing inequity

Results and learning from the South-West Academic Health Science Network’s Health Equity Innovation Programme 2022/23

To sign-up for this event, please click here.

Join us for an online webinar bringing together 4 projects, which have drawn on the therapeutic power of nature and connecting with others to improve young people’s mental health and tackle health inequalities. Come to get a quick understanding of these 4 exciting projects and how they may support your work. 

Projects presenting are: 

The Wave ProjectJoe Taylor, Founder & CEO  

The Wave uses evidence-based surf-therapy to support young people. This project evaluated and compared the effectiveness of stand-up paddle boarding on inland waterways to the surf therapy offer. The project was for children and young people struggling with anxiety and experiencing inequity, including those living with learning disabilities and/or autism. 


Resilient Young MindsDr Lucy Loveday, Founder 

This project evaluated a peer group community nature-based wellbeing programme, which aims to empower young people aged between 18-25 to develop a sense of agency for a healthier life. The young people recruited onto this programme experienced a range of challenges, all of which disproportionately and adversely affect their mental health (e.g. Adverse Childhood Events, unemployment and young carer responsibilities). 


The Apricot Centreled by Alexandra Thomas, Clinical Lead  

This project explored activity-based approaches on the Apricot Centre organic farm in Devon, to support children aged 7-13 who are either in care or at risk of being taken into care. This included working in close partnership with a local Pupil Referral Unit.  


Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) goes WildDr Rachel Hayes, Senior Research Fellow 

This project explored staff views and experiences of a new nature-based way of working with children and young people being treated in CAMHS in Cornwall

Children and young people’s mental health is a huge concern. 1 in 6 children and young people are living with a mental health disorder – that’s 5 in every classroom.  

Mental health problems are not distributed evenly across society. There are inequities, with some groups of children and young people much more likely to experience difficulties. Adverse Childhood Experiences and childhood trauma is significantly associated with anxiety-related disorders in later childhood and young adulthood, for example 

Sometimes levels of stress, development issues and lack of trust can make more standard therapies difficult for some children and young people. Carefully and thoughtfully bringing children and young people together and drawing on the therapeutic potential of nature can help children and young people to feel better.  

In 2022 the South West Academic Health Science Network launched its Health Equity Innovation Challenge to fund and support the testing of innovations to reduce anxiety for children and young people experiencing inequity. Three of these projects, The Apricot Centre, Resilient Young Minds, and The Wave Project, have all explored interventions which utilise the therapeutic potential of nature and social connection with children and young people in-person.  

This is a chance to hear directly about the results and learning from these projects, as well the ‘CAMHS goes Wild’ project at Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, which has also explored the potential of nature-based approaches in CAMHS.   

The webinar will include presentations, questions for each speaker and group reflection.  

This webinar will be relevant to: NHS and local authority commissioners, NHS providers, Public Health, education partners, Academic Health Science Networks, academics, voluntary sector organisations, funders/investors and any other partners who have an interest in children and young people’s mental health. 

To sign-up for this event, please click here.

We will be running a separate webinar to share the findings and learning from digital innovators Tellmi, BFB Labs, Good With and Brain in Hand. Further information and registration for this is here. 

Event details

June 13
2:00 pm - 3:15 pm


South West Academic Health Science Network


Online – Microsoft Teams

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