The health benefits of green spaces We are just weeks away from the launch of our new ‘Evelyn H. Lauder Garden’, the development of a green space at our newest centre in the West Midlands. The garden is the exciting culmination of a new partnership between Breast Cancer Haven and Estée Lauder and was designed by RHS multi-award winning designers, Ruth Gwynn and Rupert Kryd. The health benefits of green spaces Many of us take the great outdoors for granted and choose to be indoors away from the beauty and nature the world brings us. People with breast cancer may find themselves spending a lot of time indoors, whether it is because they are receiving medical treatment or they don’t feel well enough be out and about. However, research has shown that there is a positive relationship between green space and general well-being, proving to reduce depression, anxiety and stress which are all challenges that someone who is undergoing breast cancer treatment may be experiencing. Not only will the garden act as an extension of the tranquil spaces available inside Breast Cancer Haven centres, but it will give our visitors and people close to them the chance to enjoy and appreciate the outdoors, taking time for themselves or with others to relax. Many of our visitors comment how helpful it is to them to spend time outside and in natural surroundings during their breast cancer experience. The West Midlands garden will enable our visitors to immerse themselves in nature far from the hustle and bustle of hospitals appointments and treatments. Exercise and relaxation outdoors Research shows the benefit of exercise during breast cancer treatment, some of which can take place in a garden. Mindfulness, yoga and Tai Chi classes can be offered within the West Midlands garden during the warmer weather. These classes, which help many of our visitors tackle stress, are perfect for the outdoors. Hosting the classes in natural surroundings may help to promote their effectiveness for some. This is because exercising outdoors has been linked to higher feelings of wellbeing and lower feelings of stress or anxiety than doing the same activity indoors. Gardening Visitors will be able to tend to the garden if they wish, allowing them to truly make the space their own and feel comfortable and at ease. Not only this, but time spent in the garden will encourage social interactions between visitors and help to reduce feelings of isolation. In addition, fresh produce for the centre’s kitchen will be grown in raised beds in the garden. Visit the garden We’re so excited to reveal to you the finished garden project at our West Midlands centre which will allow visitors of Breast Cancer Haven, West Midlands a welcome break from the stress of treatment in an open and free space. Access our free breast cancer support services at Breast Cancer Haven, West Midlands and visit our new garden.