Applicants invited for our new mental health recovery programme in the outdoors

6th August, 2018
by Julian | 3 Min Read
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A new Sharpham Trust project is offering a unique programme of mindfulness in nature to support mental health recovery, thanks to funding from the Big Lottery.

The new programme is for people who want to improve their well-being, skills, resilience and life chances through a connection to nature.

The Trust’s new Mindful-in-Nature project launches this September with a programme of Introduction Days and a 9-week course.

“We are developing a distinctive approach by combining our mindfulness work and nature connection using the exceptional setting of the Sharpham Estate,” said Ben Ballard, Sharpham Trust’s Programme and Development Manager.

“We believe that the synthesis of mindfulness and nature here will help support people’s mental health, reduce stress and anxiety and encourage a sense of belonging and community involvement.”

Who is this for?

The project is currently aimed at adults aged 18 and above.

Working in partnership with Devon Recovery Learning Community, this programme fills a gap in provision for people in the Torbay and Totnes areas who may not be in crisis at the moment, but who want to improve and maintain good mental health.

The Mindful-In-Nature course is not intended as an alternative to clinical treatment and Sharpham’s courses are offered as an aid to recovery, well-being and helping to prevent relapse. We recommend that participants are in a relatively stable period of mental well-being in order to get the most out of the course.

The structure of the programme

Mindful-in-Nature at The Sharpham Trust takes the form of 1-day Introduction to Mindfulness in Nature courses and a 9-week course. Participants can sign up for one or the other or both.

The 1-day course is offered on a sliding scale and the 9-week course costs £195. There are bursaries and funded places available for both for those experiencing financial hardship.

The 9-week course will run every Tuesday from 10.30am – 3.30pm and will take place in Sharpham’s beautiful woodland, in the grounds of 18th century mansion Sharpham House.

The woodland site offers an outdoor kitchen, toilets and a covered fire shelter for wet and cold weather conditions. A free minibus service running from Torbay to Totnes and Sharpham will be provided by Bob the Bus.

A simple lunch is included which will be prepared together by the group.

The Mindful-in-Nature project is being offered by the Sharpham Trust thanks to funding from The Big Lottery’s Reaching Communities fund.

Nature’s healing at Sharpham

Numerous studies demonstrate that spending time with nature has extensive mental health benefits.

Findings from the national Eco-Minds programme found that 69% of people experienced significant increases in mental well-being after attending an Eco-minds project (Feel Better Outside, Feel Better Inside, Essex University 2014)

The Sharpham Trust is a charity offering mindfulness and meditation retreats on the Sharpham Estate, set within the South Hams designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

“We’ve got exceptional natural resources here at Sharpham and a track record of achieving positive outcomes for people in recovery from mental health difficulties,” said Ben.

The project has come about through a network of partners and stakeholders and Sharpham’s own team of skilled, qualified leaders and facilitators.

More information and how to apply

There is more information at:

Or call 01803 732542 or email [email protected]