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Johanna Hirvonen, Ph.D.*¹, Leena Uosukainen, Ph.D.*² *Mikkeli University of Applied Sciences, Finland ¹ Department of Culture, Youth and Social Work, ² Department of Health Care

The aim of the study was: to examine the effects of the nature-assisted client work practices on wellbeing among the clients of social and health care services,

to construct a theoretical framework on the effects of nature-assisted client work on wellbeing (=programme theory of nature-assisted interventions)

The effects of nature-assisted client work on clients’ wellbeing

Client group

Decreased stress level

Adults with mental retardation

Aggressive client did calm down when sat alone at pier.

People with drug dependence

Nature tour in the lake district and sitting by a campfire

People with mental health problems

Improved behaviour at a nature tour

Children and adolescents living at professional fosterfamily home

Spending time alone in a forest

Elderly people suffering from memory disorders

Improved concentration and presence

Improved mood

Improved activity level

Other effects

Improved activity level and ability to take responsibility in ADL

Participating in farm work

Having a personal garden

Aggressive client has learnt constructive ways to communicate when working with animals

Improvements in social interactions and selfconcept

Functional ability and diseases Family background



Previous nature experiences

Participating in forestry works Time to observe surrounding environment more actively

Positive experiences when growing flowers and vegetables


Nature tours, riding a horse, farm work, rowing

Beautiful landscape, Positive memories

Correspondence: Johanna Hirvonen

Main mechanisms and contextual factors of nature-assisted interventions affecting client’s wellbeing

Leena Uosukainen

Forestry works, experience of working together with others Having positive experiences when riding a horse

Physical contact with animal may activate to remember meaningful nature experiences

Approving relationship with animals

Nature tours, Outdoor activities, Farm work, Gardening, Spending time outside, Observing nature, Using natural materials, Events at nature

Committed staff, Knowledge about green care activities, Time spent doing nature-assisted activities, Social contacts, Client – worker communication, Feedback, Goal-oriented working practices and continuity, Inclusion and personal influence in rehabilitation, Functional environment

Decreased stress level, Improved concentration and presence, Improved mood, Improved activity level, Ability to take responsibility in ADL, Improvements in social interactions and self-concept

MAMK Luontohoiva-hankkeen juliste  

Informatiivinen juliste

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