We all depend on the natural environment for our health and wellbeing and thanks to protected landscapes like our National Trails, we have access to truly special places.
We help over 9 million people every year access the coast as a place to be active, relax or spend quality time with family and friends, and all part of a happy, healthy lifestyle. We also reach out to those in the community who may not have had opportunities to get out exploring the Coast Path, making sure they have the support they need to go walking. Read on to hear about some of our current work.
Connecting Actively to Nature
As part of our charitable mission to ensure everyone has access to the Coast Path, we’re working to inspire and support people to get active and stay active, so they can reap the health benefits of walking. Working in partnership with Active Devon as part of the Connecting Actively to Nature (CAN) programme, we run projects for people aged over 55 in Devon aimed at getting them more active. These projects not only have a good social aspect to them but they also connect people to our world-famous walking trail right on their doorstep. One such project is called Couch to Coast. It follows the popular model of ‘Couch to 5k’, but instead of getting people running, we take them from sitting on the sofa to cruising along the Coast Path!
Connecting Actively to Nature Report
Between 2019 and 2021 we successfully completed 8 projects across Devon with over 230 people taking part. Read our summary of the programme and discover more about how the CAN programme has encouraged participants to continue their active journey with the coast and nature.
A Walking Welcome
Walking the Coast Path is one of the ways we connect to the country we live in and is hugely beneficial to our physical and mental wellbeing. However, for people who have come to the country as a refugee or asylum seeker, exploring the countryside can be a daunting prospect. That’s why we’re working in partnership with Devon & Cornwall Refugee Support (DCRS) and Fotonow CIC to introduce asylum seekers from around the world to the South West Coast Path.
For the walks that were completed during Summer 2021, the participants put together a Photo Guidebook which can be viewed here.
Or watch the video below to learn more about the project
Health benefits of walking
- Improves heart health, lung capacity and circulation
- Reduces the risk of chronic diseases like Type 2 diabetes, cancer, heart disease and dementia
- Improves flexibility and strengthens joints, bones and muscle
- Boosts the immune system and improves digestion
- Aids weight loss
Mental health and well-being
- Improves mood, reduces anxiety, aids sleep and improves self-image
- Reduces stress and anxiety
- Gives you more energy
- Improves creativity
- A great way of socialising
- Connects you to nature and your environment
- Reduces the risk of suffering from clinical depression