Green Health Prescribing with Ageing Well

A Green Health Prescription is a new form of prescription. Alongside other, traditional, treatments your health professional may prescribe spending time outdoors. We wanted to shine a spotlight on a service that uses time spent in nature as way keeping well. We reached out to Vivian from Ageing Well to hear about the work they do.

Do you live and/or work in Midlothian and want to share your own experiences of mental health and wellbeing and the different ways keep you well?

If you would like us to share your story, please email

Ageing Well aims improve maintain and promote the physical and mental health and well being of older people in Midlothian and improve their quality of life through a programme of activities and services by implementing a peer support model where trained volunteers lead, encourage and provide information to assist and inspire their peers in adopting a more active and healthy life.

Volunteers are the key to the success of this project by running and supporting free or low cost activities in their local area. They also offer fitness checks in various locations throughout Midlothian and they organise larger events such as Walk the Line.

There are currently over 60 volunteers within the project who are active in developing the weekly ‘Be Active’ programme. There are 56 sessions/classes offered each week ranging from singing, walking, new age kurling and tai chi, to various dance classes, table tennis, walking netball, walking rugby and walking football.

The benefits of getting outside:

Apart from the obvious one that you get a great work out, whether its walking, playing sport or gardening, it’s also very sociable and a lot of fun. Connecting with people is so important for your mental health and feeling part of a community. The fresh air also improves your sleep and just 10 minutes of sunlight every day helps you get Vitamin D which is needed for your bones and immune system. You’ll also find you will have more energy and feel better within yourself, less anxious and stressed.

Quotes from walkers:

“We talk about issues as we walk, as they say, a problem shared is a problem halved”.

“Great walks and everyone loves the company plus we get a soup and cup of tea afterwards”

“My confidence has improved so much since coming to the walks, I’d be too shy to even look at anyone in the street now I’ll chat away quite happy”.

“It’s a long weekend on my own so I look forward to seeing everyone on the walk”

“Great fun and I’ve started to lose weight…getting into clothes I haven’t worn for a few years!”.

“I really didn’t know Midlothian was so beautiful and we learn something new about the area every week”.

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If you’re experiencing low mood, anxiety, or stress in your life, looking into self-help activities and ideas might be the right option for you.rnrn