eco therapy & horticulture project


A unique location

The majority of treatment centres in the UK are based in urban or suburban areas, often in close proximity to busy towns and cities.

Bosence is set in 22 acres of beautiful Cornish gardens and woodlands. Bosence provides the perfect rural location where you can concentrate on getting well, free from distraction.

In more recent years there has been a growing recognition of ecotherapy and the vital role it plays in optimising positive mental health, with a clear application in supporting individuals to overcome addiction and maintain long term recovery. Ecotherapy can also give people a sense of achievement and purpose. It provides structure and routine to people who might not have these in their lives.

Our unique setting enables us to offer a range of opportunities that make full use of this environment. Our ecotherapy programme is comprised of 10 individual weekly sessions, each of which offer the following varied opportunities:

Propagation’, provides clients with the necessary skills to learn how to plant seeds and care for plants.

eco therapy & horticulture project

‘Herbal Tea Making’, is a session that aims to promote wellness and relieve stress by helping participants to achieve a more relaxed state of mind. Those taking part are introduced to a range of herbs and gain an understanding of how they nourish the nervous system and strengthen the immune system.

‘Nature Observation’, designed to promote care, respect and understanding of the natural world. In this session, clients will learn how to identify different species of wildlife and observe and interpret the environment around them.

‘Forest Bathing & Mindfulness’, teaches the basic principles of forest bathing, mindfulness, improving sensory awareness and breathing techniques.

‘Gardening’, promotes physical health through exercise, strengthens muscles and improves mobility. Benefits mental health through a sense of purpose and achievement – helps to reduce feelings of isolation or exclusion.

‘Creative Writing’, expressive writing can have a positive impact on health and wellbeing at multiple levels, especially when done on a regular basis. Creative writing has been shown to alleviate stress and improve cognitive function.

‘Conservation’, acts as a motivational tool to inspire a lifestyle change, while improving fitness levels through a variety of pulse-raising conservation activities. Those taking part learn a number of new skills. The Department of Health recognises the invaluable impact that green gyms can have on those who participate in sessions.

‘Lawn Games’, improve physical health and self-esteem. These sessions result in better problem-solving and creativity, through a concept called ‘divergent thinking’, to consider different ideas by considering many possible solutions.

‘Nature-inspired outdoor drawing’, research into the benefits of drawing and painting has found that physical pain may be reduced or even disappear as the artist is engrossed in their art. Painting and drawing are highly recommended for recuperation from painful events, with many therapists including these activities in their schedules. Research has found that art-based activities.

‘Nature Hunt’, the nature hunt is essentially a scavenger hunt in which participants are tasked with collecting particular items from around the grounds. Considering the myriad of benefits associated with outdoor play, including a reduction in stress, improved levels of vitamin D and the application of both physical and cognitive skills, the game is an easy way to exercise, promote a healthy lifestyle and foster an interest in the natural world.

The sessions are all facilitated by the Bosence Horticulturalist and Land Manager – Noah Hall. Noah has responsibility for ensuring the grounds of Bosence are maintained to the highest possible standard, enabling clients to fully benefit from our incredible natural environment. In recent years Noah has created a woodland nature trail and sensory garden, and is also responsible for what would seem to be an ever increasing volume of fresh organic produce, grown in several on-site polytunnels and allotments.

To compliment the ecotherapy sessions, Noah also provides a weekly cookery session to those enrolled on the residential treatment programme. Much of the produce used in these cookery sessions and in the preparation of daily meals is sourced from our onsite provision. In addition to the structured sessions, clients from either residential service have the option to help Noah with whatever task he has planned for a particular day. Recently this has included helping with: seed sowing, potting on, planting veg, planting flowers, weeding, watering and strawberry picking. Clients also have the opportunity to conduct wildlife surveys.

Take a 3D virtual tour of the Eco Therapy & Horticulture Project.

Client Testimonials

“The Ecotherapy project at Bosence has provided me with a number of new experiences and opportunities. In the last few weeks I’ve acquired the skills to identify a variety of the different types of herbs. Through education sessions, I’ve also gained knowledge on how to combine, prepare and cook different types of tea. Since the start of my treatment, I’ve regularly been involved with the planting and harvesting of fruit and vegetables. In particular, I’ve enjoyed taking part in ‘Vegan Friday’, where I have learnt new recipes, and prepared several dishes using only the produce grown onsite. When I complete treatment, I will definitely continue to cook these recipes as regularly as I can”

Holly, from Cornwall

“One of the main reasons why I choose Bosence, is because I wanted to come somewhere where I could get away from things. At Bosence, I feel completely removed from temptation, it is the perfect environment for me to be able to focus on my treatment and concentrate on getting well. I’ve really enjoyed the guided nature walks around the nature trail, where I have been able to take part in wildlife surveys, to identify a range of species. In the mornings I’ll often take a walk around the grounds, just to admire the scenery and breathe in the country air”. Bosence has so much to offer, and I’ve learnt so much. I’ve been given responsibility to look after the greenhouses, which I really appreciate as it’s my way of giving back and contributing to the day to day running of Bosence”.

Nick, from London


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