Wildlife for wellbeing

Wildlife

Wildlife for wellbeing

© Jon Hawkins

People need wildlife

We believe that everyone deserves to live in a healthy, wildlife-rich world and experience the joy of nature. 

Studies have shown that those who have the least access to nature also have the worst levels of physical health and mental wellbeing. 

We want more people to discover that daily contact with wildlife improves their mental health, and we want more people to care about and take action for wildlife as a result. Seeing birds near our homes, walking through green spaces filled with wild flowers, and along rivers that are clean and clear reduces stress, fatigue, anxiety and depression.

Daily contact with nature is also linked to better physical health, including reductions in obesity and improved concentration.

A study of Wildlife Trust volunteers showed that 95% of participants with low mental wellbeing at the start of volunteering reported an improvement in 6 weeks

Nature and mental health

Nature improves your health

Daily contact with nature is linked to reduced levels of chronic stress, reductions in obesity and improved concentration, so get your colleagues outside and help them feel healthier.

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Nature makes happier workers

Green your office by creating an outside area and encouraging lunchtime walks. There is a 10% reduction in work absence if employees are able to look at a green space rather than a wall.

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Green offices boost productivity

Adding plants and photos of wildlife (or even playing birdsong!) can help your colleagues at work. Employees are 15% more productive when workplaces have even a few houseplants.

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Nature makes you more active

Map out local walking routes in wild places for people to enjoy at lunchtime. People with easy access to nature are three times as likely to be active as those without access.

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Green exercise can save the NHS money

Ecotherapy could reduce antidepressant prescription costs, so encourage walking meetings and exercise in your workplace. Mind has shown that green exercise benefits health and wellbeing.

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Green neighbourhoods cut depression

Natural features near houses reduce mental illness. Work with neighbours to create wildflower borders and bird feeding stations.

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© Wildlife Trusts 2019

Couple walking in bluebell wood

© Ben Hall/2020VISION

Places for people & wildlife

We manage our reserves for people and wildlife, places where you can feel the benefits of nature first hand.

Discover our reserves
Corporate Challenge Day

© Surrey Wildlife Trust

Wildlife at work

Find out how nature can help mental and physical health in the workplace.

Find out more
volunteers in Surrey

© Jon Hawkins, Surrey Hills Photography

Volunteering

Volunteering is a great way to help wildlife whilst keeping fit and making new friends.

More about volunteering

We also run a selection of health and wellbeing events including forest bathing and outdoor yoga.

View events

Every child wild

© Jon Hawkins

Over the last 40 years, children have become increasingly separated from wildlife. It’s a natural disaster in the making!

Like most parents, we believe that a childhood separated from nature is a diminished experience. 28% of UK children are now overweight or obese and fewer than 10% play in natural areas.

However, a study of nearly 350,000 medical records showed that living within a kilometre of a green space reduces the risk of 15 major illnesses, particularly anxiety and depression, and even more so for children. There is also evidence that children who grow up with nature are more likely to protect it when they are older.

More about engaging children with nature

Go wild with us