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Connecting Communities with Nature

In a world marked by urbanisation and fast-paced living, the benefits of connecting with nature are increasingly recognised for being beneficial to our mental and physical well-being and community cohesion. The Friendly Bench is part of this movement, effortlessly connecting people with nature and creating positive community experiences across the UK.


Wildlife connections activity at The Friendly Bench Chester

Research consistently demonstrates the profound impact of nature on mental health and overall well-being. A study published in the Journal of Environmental Psychology found that exposure to green spaces is linked to reduced stress levels and enhanced mood. The Friendly Bench taps into this knowledge, providing a platform for individuals, organisations, and groups to actively engage with nature in their communities.

 

The Friendly Bench achieves this by offering a range of opportunities including the involvement in gardening and maintenance activities, connecting with environmental-focused groups, and collaborating with environmentally-focussed organisations such as The Wildlife Trusts, Bat Conservation groups, Incredible Edibles, and the British Trust for Ornithology.


The strategic placement of The Friendly Benches near green spaces like parks and community gardens further facilitates community access and use of these areas. In collaboration with dedicated volunteers, The Friendly Bench contributes to the rejuvenation of nearby green spaces, planting trees, creating "bee corridors," and establishing raised beds for vegetable and herbs, enhancing the overall natural environment.

 

The Friendly Bench volunteers actively participate in gardening tasks, fostering a sense of community and connection. Examples of green volunteering initiatives, such as those in Brandon, Rugby, Culdrose, and Chester, showcase the tangible results and positive impact on the communities involved. From winning RHS awards for 'Best Garden for Special Needs' to fostering meaningful activities for adults with learning difficulties, The Friendly Bench stands as a testament to the transformative power of connecting people with nature.


The Friendly Bench goes beyond traditional benches; it integrates nature-related initiatives, creating sensory experiences for visitors. Collaborating with the charity Sense, TFB sites feature sensory trails with tactile bug hotels and sensory planting, enhancing the overall connection to nature.



User feedback demonstrates the positive impact of The Friendly Bench's garden elements. Visitors appreciate the sensory aspects, describing it as a "green oasis of calm" that provides a tranquil space for rest and relaxation.


These testimonials underscore the success of The Friendly Bench in not just connecting communities with nature but also in creating lasting, positive experiences that contribute to the well-being of individuals and the cohesion of communities. As organisations, groups, and individuals seek to make nature more accessible, The Friendly Bench stands as a shining example of the profound benefits that arise from fostering a connection with the natural world.

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