“I routinely prescribe nature to children and families. Nature has the power to heal."
Research suggests that taking a walk, visiting a park, or getting out in nature can relieve stress, encourage social bonds, and support physical activity. Less stress means less depression, anxiety, and isolation...not just for kids, but for adults, too!
Portland Parks and Recreation offers plenty of opportunities for adventure! Search for your next destination through the Find a Park feature, and be sure to check out their list of Inclusive Playgrounds, which is growing! Gresham also offers an array of parks and trails to explore. Troutdale, with its proximity to the Sandy and Columbia rivers, offers plenty of fun options as well, and Fairview is home to many others, including our favorite, Salish Pond Wetlands Park.
Wait, there’s more! Metro Parks and Natural Areas offer 17,000 acres of outdoor exploration! Try out the Interactive Park Finder, and while you’re there, check out their Parks and Nature News section for the latest on the ways our community enjoys nature.
We love keeping up with Metro’s Our Big Backyard magazine and exploring back issues for beautiful photographs. The latest (Fall 2020) issue features two articles written by members of our community.
- A Congolese Garden in East Portland written by Parkrose High School sophomore Thierry Ndayisaba
- Reclaiming Nature for People of Color written by People of Color Outdoors founder Pamela Slaughter
While you're outside, you can take advantage of the learning opportunities it offers. Portland Parks has created an at-home nature activities page, with links to videos and other activities that tap into kids’ sense of curiosity. You can find a Flower Scavenger Hunt, a Birds of Portland guide, and a map of Tree Museums that are open for viewing right in your neighborhood.
There’s so much to see and do out there, so take Dr. Razani’s prescription and get outside! Even just a little bit can do wonders for your health - mental, physical, emotional, and overall!
This article was written for our Family Newsletter, brought to you by Home Learning Support and available in English and Spanish. Please sign up here and you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.