New Haven Nature & Health Initiative

The COVID-19 pandemic has made the effect of nature on people’s mental and physical health increasingly clear: time in nature makes us healthier. 

The New Haven Nature & Health Initiative is a collection of individuals from the New Haven community, health care system, community-based organizations, and Yale who believe in the power of nature in affecting the health of individuals and communities.

We focus on convening discussions and sharing knowledge to engage New Haven residents to improve their health through experiences in nature. This includes:

  • Supporting health care workers in prescribing nature to their patients
  • Identifying opportunities to improve access to nature and comfort with nature for marginalized communities
  • Creating and promoting programming and tools
  • Developing materials to support knowledge sharing of nature and health opportunities
  • Sharing data on the measured benefits of nature and health initiatives within the community

Our Vision

A healthier and greener New Haven where all neighborhoods and residents have safe and equitable access to greenspaces and nature-based programming that is inclusive and welcoming – celebrating positive health, positive self-image, knowledge, culture, leadership, and stewardship at all ages.

Our Mission

We develop and promote programming and research that expands community and clinical engagement in healing, nature-based activities.

Our Partners

Working Group members are involved with initiatives at the Fair Haven Community Health Care, Yale New Haven HealthPark Rx AmericaGather New HavenTrust for Public LandUrban Resources InitiativeNew Haven Department of Parks, Recreation and Trees, Yale Child Study CenterYale School of the EnvironmentBeing Well at YaleYale Office of SustainabilityCampus Nature Rx NetworkThe Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, Connecticut Mental Health Center, City of New Haven, LEAP, Common Ground, Yale School of Management, OutdoorRX CT, and the Connecticut Children’s Care Network.

In the News

The Healing Powers of the Great Outdoors December 10, 2022

Medical Providers are taking Nature Therapy Seriously

Getting a Nature Fix: Author Talk March 18, 2021 (recording available)

Prioritizing Nature


Community groups to help you get outside

Professional organizations

Resources from Yale to Inspire Time in Nature

Get Involved

Interested in joining this effort? Have a resource to share?

Contact us at