Area therapy programs use ‘nature connections’ for healing
(Mountain XPress) What is the draw of the garden, the chicken coop, the pasture? For many it’s a connection that can offer unseen spiritual, mental and emotional yields. “Just being connected with nature is spiritual,” says Debbie O’Neil, managing director of at the Montford campus of CooperRiis Healing Community, a holisitc mental health program with a second location on a 97-acre farm in Mill Spring. Many of the residents at CooperRiis are dealing with feelings of isolation, O’Neil explains, in large part due to the stigma that surrounds mental disorders. CooperRiis’ approach to healing brings residents into the surrounding community — through projects such as maintaining beehives at an off-campus location or helping the Odyssey School maintain its trails.
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