Reflecting Paradise: Nature Seychelles’ Green Health Programme
Does nature affect our health, our well being, our happiness and if it does to what degree? In what ways? Does it differ for different people and can we increase the benefits it may bring?
Studies show that nature has huge positive benefits for people. Simply walking in natural surroundings can be beneficial. Researchers at the University of Michigan (UoM) found that walking in a park in any season, or even viewing pictures of nature, can help improve memory and attention. Psychology researchers Marc Berman, John Jonides and Stephen Kaplan at UoM found memory performance and attention spans improved by 20 percent after people spent only one hour interacting with nature.
These researchers believe the findings could have broader impact on helping people who may be suffering from mental fatigue. The researchers believe that people are far more likely to be satisfied with their lives when their environment supports three basic needs: the ability to understand and explore; to feel they make a difference;and to feel competent and effective.
Groundbreaking research by Professor Jules Pretty of the University of Essex shows that exercising in nature has huge individual and social benefits. Ninety percent of those participating showed increased self esteem. Seventy one percent reported decreased levels of anxiety and the same percentage said they felt less tense.
Based on this and other researches, Nature Seychelles began a programme to help people interact with nature while also participating in activities that help nature. We aim to make valuable contribution to the well being of society by reconnecting people with themselves and with nature. The programme makes use of our surroundings here at Nature Seychelles, the Heritage Garden, and Sanctuary at Roche Caiman, as well as the beautiful nature that surrounds us in Mahe.
The programme gives people the opportunity explore every aspect of their well being while appreciating and giving back to nature.