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Pathways to health through Australian woodlands and forests: `Sign-posts` from recent research and practice

Townsend, Mardie 2005, Pathways to health through Australian woodlands and forests: `Sign-posts` from recent research and practice, in 1st European COSTAction E39 Conference, Urban Forestry for Human Health and Wellbeing proceedings, SIOKIS Medical Publications, Thessaloniki, Greece, pp. 49-70.

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Title Pathways to health through Australian woodlands and forests: `Sign-posts` from recent research and practice
Author(s) Townsend, Mardie
Conference name European COST Action E39 Conference ( 1st : 2005 : Thessaloniki, Greece)
Conference location Thessaloniki, Greece
Conference dates 13 - 15 October 2005
Title of proceedings 1st European COSTAction E39 Conference, Urban Forestry for Human Health and Wellbeing proceedings
Editor(s) Gallis, Christos Th.
Publication date 2005
Conference series European COST Conference
Start page 49
End page 70
Publisher SIOKIS Medical Publications
Place of publication Thessaloniki, Greece
Summary Health is inherently 'ecological' and the natural environment plays a crucial role in human health and well-being. Yet we do not necessarily design, manage or market such areas in ways that acknowledge this link. This paper draws on recent research by a Deakin University team exploring the links between use of and involvement in the maintenance of forests/woodlands, and health and well-being outcomes. Qualitative and quantitative methods have been used to collect data from forest/woodland users and tram volunteers contributing to management and maintenance of such areas, concerning their perceptions of the impacts of the experience
on their health and well-being. In two of the projects, samples of 'users' and 'volunteers' were compared with samples 'non-users' and 'non-volunteers'. Several of the studies included the use of scales of self-rated health, social cohesion, and frequency of use of medical services.The studies have identified a range of perceived physical, mental and social health benefits resulting from use of and/or engagement with forests/woodlands. Study findings have implications for design, management and marketing of such areas, since they identity factors influencing use of and engagement with such areas, and have the potential to promote more widespread recognition of the value of such areas and more commitment to them by individuals, communities and governments. The challenge for us is to build on this research base to more clearly Signpost the mutually beneficial links between forest and woodland ecosystems and human health and well-being, creating new and better pathways to a healthy future.
Language eng
Field of Research 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
HERDC Research category E1 Full written paper - refereed
Copyright notice ©2005, SIOKIS Medical Publications
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30005898

Document type: Conference Paper
Collections: School of Health and Social Development
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.