Deakin University

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Exploring Forest Therapy as an Adjunct to Treatment as Usual within a Community Health Counselling Service

journal contribution
posted on 2023-02-08, 23:05 authored by Subhadra EvansSubhadra Evans, A Livingstone, M Dodds, D Kotte, M Geertsema, M O’Shea
We aimed to explore consumers’ experiences of FT as an adjunct to their usual psychological treatment. Ten mental health consumers attended 1–6 monthly FT sessions. Interviews were conducted to understand whether FT contributed to therapeutic change. We used a phenomenological framework and reflexive thematic analysis to understand the data. Three themes were developed that reflected 1) experiencing safety through the forest; 2) connecting with the forest, the present, and each other; and 3) lasting therapeutic impacts related to spirituality and symptomatology. This study provides initial insight toward the potential of FT in supporting a range of mental health presentations.