Mental health support and activities

Centre for nature and green living

Boost your Mental Wellbeing at St Nicks

Bushcraft at St Nicks

The last year has been hard on many people’s mental health, so we are especially glad to be sharing a range of opportunities to boost your mental wellbeing. From bushcraft to willow weaving to one-to-one support for mental health at work and wellbeing workshops, there’s something for everyone.

The evidence is clear.  ‘Nature connectedness’ is strongly associated with happiness and the feeling that life is worthwhile.  The research tells us that “On average, the most nature-connected adults have self-reported health scores that are 9% higher than the rest of the population. And  ‘nature connectedness’ is associated with lower levels of depression and anxiety.” [1]

We know from direct experience how connecting with nature with the right support effectively promotes good mental health. Since 2015, 93% of our Ecotherapy participants have experienced significant improvements in their overall mental and physical wellbeing. They say that, amongst other things, taking part in the programme has led to reduction in stress levels, reduction in depression and anxiety and increased feelings of happiness through positively contributing towards the environment.

We know that we need to actively connect with nature to get the most benefit to our wellbeing, whether it’s taking time to admire a sunset or by getting creative with nature based crafts. Combine nature connectedness with a little extra support, and you’ve got a winning combination. So why not take a look at what’s on at St Nicks to help you take care of your mental wellbeing in the coming months?

Upcoming sessions

Our ground-breaking Ecotherapy project is offering a series of one-day sessions.

Join our Bushcraft sessions to discover fire lighting, hand tool use, water purification, shelter construction and the natural world around you in our fun and friendly . Dates are:

Get creative with Willow Weaving  and make spirals, bird feeders and more to decorate your garden. Dates are:

If you are interested in any of these sessions, please complete an enquiry form or contact Ecotherapy Project Manager Kathy Sturgess at

Rachel and Kathy – our Ecotherapy Team

In addition, as part of our general programme, we are offering a Happy by Nature morning session on Saturday 17 July to explore being in and with nature through using your senses, mindfulness and relaxation exercises. Tickets are available via Eventbrite.

All activities are fully risk assessed, with appropriate measures in place, e.g. social distancing.

Ongoing support

As part of the new Thriving at Work  programme, we are offering free one to one support for people in work who are experiencing mental health challenges. Our person-centred sessions will help you to find what works for you, including strategies for connecting with nature to support your wellbeing at work. We also offer free tailor-made support for employers to create a workplace where everyone can thrive. Contact our team via if you are interested in accessing the support or would like to find out more.

Find what works at work for you with our free mentoring support

As well as the one-day sessions mentioned above, our Ecotherapy project offers a wonderful variety of group activities underpinned by one-to one mentoring support.  You can stay up to date with Ecotherapy by signing up for the seasonal newsletter. If you would like to find out more, or to arrange an informal chat before enrolling on any of the groups, contact Ecotherapy Project Manager at or use our online query form.

Online resources

You can access a wealth of information and tips for boosting your wellbeing from our Ecotherapy team online in a range of blogs – from keeping a nature journal to connecting with nature through art and much more.

We recently teamed up with experts by experience Time to Change York, for a great online session, with discussions helping produce this great list of local resources for nature connectedness.

Let us know your experiences of connecting to nature to boost wellbeing – we’d love to hear from you.


1 Noticing Nature Report: National Trust and University of Derby, Feb 2020

[this 2021 blog post was updated on 01/03/2022 with new contact details]

1 July 2021 | Categories: Ecotherapy, Inspiration, Thriving at Work | Tags: advice, art, bushcraft, coaching, craft, ecotherapy, employers, mental wellbeing, mentoring, mindfullness, nature, nature connectedness, nature journal, support, Thriving at work, Time To Change, willow weaving, work life balance