This Natural England report (October 2022) focuses on how the natural environment can support children and young people. It summarises evidence of the links between the natural environment and a range of outcomes based on rapid reviews.

The report is aimed at: policy makers; practitioners; practice enablers (including Natural England); local decision makers; and the wider research community.

The report draws on the Monitor of Engagement with the Natural Environment (MENE) national survey of children and young people in England (2018/19) data, and Children’s People and Nature (C-PANS) survey (2021) based on children aged 8 to 15 years old in England.

It looks in particular at: the links between natural environment and physical health for children; natural environments and mental health for children; and cost effectiveness of interventions.

The report finds that evidence about the physical health benefits of engagement with the natural environment for children is limited. However, being outdoors is widely acknowledged as providing opportunities for moderate exercise, and this in turn aids the physical health of children.

The report concludes that public health policy needs to recognise the key role that access to nature has for children. This is important for their physical, social, cognitive, and emotional development.

This Evidence information note EIN067 briefing can be read in parallel with EIN063: Links between natural environments, learning and health (Ref. B61027).

Published On: 13.06.23|Tags: , , , , , |

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