NATURELAB’s kick-off meeting occurred from the 27th to the 29th of June at LNEC’s venue in Lisbon, Portugal. This event spanned three productive days of meetings, providing a valuable opportunity to set the guiding principles that would shape the project’s development over the course of 54 months.

During the gatherings, the leaders of each Work Package (WP) shared their initial presentations, outlining the tasks, deliverables and upcoming actions. The meetings proved to be highly constructive, as they sparked discussions on numerous crucial aspects that will remain significant throughout the project’s development.

On the final day, participants were encouraged to engage in recreational activities that offered a glimpse of the nature-based therapy strategies expected to be implemented across the 15 Experimental Sites and 4 Demonstrator Fellows in diverse regions. These ludic activities provided a firsthand experience of the potential of nature-based interventions in promoting health and well-being through nature-based therapies (NBT).

Àlex Gesse and the Forest Therapy Hub (Fthub) team, responsible for WP2, offered a captivating demonstration of their mindful activities in LNEC’s garden, showcasing how these practices promote nature connectedness based on the theoretical principles of human-nature interaction. Furthermore, the Asociación Peruana de Horticultura Terapéutica y Social (APHTS), co-leader of WP2, conducted a recreational group dynamic. Daniela Silva-Rodriguez Bonazzi, representing this not-for-profit organization, presented some of their therapeutic horticulture techniques – a holistic, evidence-based, non-pharmacological, complementary method using plants to establish a profound bond with nature in practical terms.

The kick-off meeting was a resounding success, filled with meaningful conversations, valuable insights, and the establishment of strong partnerships. It also provided an excellent opportunity for all the partners to get to know each other better and define the initial steps of the co-creation process of the path that is ahead.

In light of the project’s official start, we encourage you to stay informed about the latest developments, progress, and findings from NATURELAB by subscribing to the project’s social media channels.