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Portraits of Recovery: Nature photography project launched to improve young people’s mental wellbeing

The exhibition aims to help improve young people's emotional wellbeing.
The exhibition aims to help improve young people's emotional wellbeing.

A new photography project has been launched to help young people connect with nature and improve their emotional wellbeing.

NHS Highland’s Children and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) partnered with rewilding charity Trees for Life to develop the initiative Portraits of Recovery.

The project, which will open at Eden Court on July 2 and run until the end of the month, has been designed as a “fun and engaging” way to encourage young people to spend more time outdoors.

It includes a nature photography exhibition, as well as art workshops, which have been facilitated by Alisa Villegas of Think Health Think Nature and artist Innes Anderson.

Funded by Support In Mind Scotland’s Rural Community Engagement fund, it aims to promote mental health recovery in rural communities following the pandemic.

‘A way to slow down and appreciate nature’

Dr Nick Barnes of Highland CAMHS said: “I am passionate about seeking opportunities for emotional support for young people to be taken out of the clinic.

“It isn’t an environment children and young people necessarily want to come to, so using creativity and connecting with nature as a restorative experience opens up a dialogue and offers a different means of expression to talk about emotional wellbeing and mental health.”

Jim Hume of Support in Mind Scotland added: “We decided to support the Nature Photography event organised by Trees for Life as it encourages young people to spend time in nature to support their mental health.

“We think this is a fun and engaging way to spend time outdoors and connect to nature, as photography can help us slow down and appreciate the natural beauty around us.”

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