Ecotherapy in practice and education

Burls, A., 2004, Ecotherapy in practice and education, in: OPENspace, ‘Open space, people space’, OPENspace, Edinburgh

  • Author : Burls, A.
  • Year : 2004
  • Published in Book : Open space, people space
  • Abstract in English : The United Nations Johannesburg Summit (2002), Agenda 21 calls for a philosophy of “integration of the environment, and ecosystems on which we depend for our well-being”. Ecotherapy refers to the practice of supporting people with disabilities to work with nature (plants/horticulture and wildlife), with the aim of conservation and/or establishment of a local habitat and open green spaces as a form of therapy. Ecotherapeutic approaches are based on the tenet that enduring improvement in individual and public health requires approaches that span the whole community and the environment. This also necessitates a wider ecological knowledge base in professional leadership, health and social care practice and education. This paper presents doctoral research into the value of ecotherapy as a new and effective therapeutic medium for people with a diversity of disabilities. The aim of the research study is to explore the benefits of this therapeutic medium to disabled people, but above all, the study seeks to extrapolate the perceived needs for extended training in this area for practitioners and to develop new higher education training, based on the findings.
  • Comments/Notes : KEYWORDS: professional training, ecotherapy, open spaces, benefits, environment, disabled peoplel.