This document describes the Branching Out 12-week programme and outlines what is involved and how staff are trained.
One in four of us will experience a mental health problem at some stage in our life. In Scotland, one in seven people are prescribed anti-depressants, and the number being treated has risen by 5% in the past year. We need to re-think how we respond and treat common mental health problems. Branching Out is an innovative project that offers a holistic, person-centred approach promoting ‘fi ve ways to better mental health’. It brings together mental healthcare workers and outdoor staff like countryside rangers to help people recover from long-term mental health problems. Through a 12-week programme of woodland activities, Branching Out teaches participants about coping strategies to maintain positive mental health. It offers participants a chance to increase their self-confi dence, explore new places and activities, and feel engaged with their community.