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Mental Health Awareness Week

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Published: 12 May 2021

London students outside in a park 

The Health and Wellbeing team are exploring nature in this article on Mental Health Awareness Week.

Read on to learn how getting out into green spaces can help protect your mind and body.

“The theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week is ‘nature’. You might be wondering why.

Well, as we know, nature is something that can give us wellbeing and ground us in body, spirit and mind.

Spending time outdoors helps us connect our bodies and minds to the natural world. It also gives us Vitamin D from the light, which helps with healthy teeth and muscles.

It’s also been linked to combating mental health problems like depression and anxiety.

Going outside can give us perspective. Spending time in nature means experiencing calming sounds and smells as well as walking on trails and paths.

Plus being surrounded by colourful plants can have a calming effect on our senses.

Mental Health Awareness Week is an opportunity for all of us to focus on having a healthy inner life.

It was started 21 years ago by the Mental Health Foundation and has grown to be one of the biggest remembrance days in the UK.

It’s an important time to start talking about your mental health. Research has shown that during COVID-19, nearly 50% of the UK population visited green space to help them cope with the stress of living through a pandemic.

It’s an important point because there seems to be a natural understanding that developing a connection to nature benefits our wellbeing, both mental and physical.

There’s a suggestion that our love of the outdoors comes from the association gardening has of putting food on the table and providing at-home remedies for a wide range of physical issues.

The Royal Horticultural Society released research earlier this year showing that people who garden every day are 6% more mentally healthy.

But if you don’t have a garden, there’s no need to miss out. London is filled with wonderful green spaces for you to explore.

Check out this list of some of the most beautiful natural places in and around the city.

Plus, we’re always here to help. We have two upcoming Chai and Chat events dedicated to Mental Health Awareness Week.

The first is on Thursday 13th May, 3pm to 4pm. We’ll be joined by experts from the Togetherall mental health platform to answer your questions on the best way to look after your mind.

The second will be on Friday 14th May, 2pm to 3pm, where we’ll speak with Mind in Tower Hamlets.

All the sessions are free, and anyone can join. You’ll have been sent an invitation through Canvas so check your emails.

If you’ve got any questions about the events, get in touch with us at”

As a University of Sunderland in London student, the Health and Wellbeing Team are here for you.

If you’d like to speak with a member of the team confidentially, you can book an appointment online.

Get in touch through Compass, email them at or call on 0207 531 7343.

Find out more by following #WeAreSunLon on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.