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Green spaces and wellbeing project scoops major award

20 December 2021

A scheme in which the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences is involved has won the prestigious National Lottery Project of the Year award for Wales in 2021. The Green Valley Conservation and Heritage project in Abercynon bested 1500 other organisations to win the public vote.

The scheme is aimed at bolstering employability skills and mental wellbeing in the former mining village. As a part of this project the School of Pharmacy are designing a “time-travel” garden where visitors will walk through zones planted with vegetation that would have been native in the region during different eras, from ancient woodland to a Celtic meadow, to plants cultivated by the Romans, to medicinal plants studied by the mediaeval Physicians of Myddfai, to a 21st Century pollinator patch.

Alongside this the School will be measuring the effects of the wild spaces on the mental wellbeing of patients in order to forge a green prescribing framework for doctors. Whilst the link between nature and health is well known, hard data on the correlation is lacking. With a more rigorous dataset GPs will have a new suite of treatments for patients who suffer from mental health problems.

Professor Les Baillie said, “We are supporting the community in Abercynon  create an environment where they can connect with nature and enhance their personal wellbeing.”

A video outlining the project can be viewed HERE

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