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LETTER: The great outdoors can heal

Letter to the editor

To the editor,

The pandemic has impacted people’s mental health and the situation itself has affected everyone in one form or another. Most of my coworkers, as well as friends, have suffered unemployment, lack of affordable housing, isolation and this has impacted mental health, which is not talked about frequently.

I have volunteered for different organizations, food banks and community outreach, and I personally have heard people suffering depression, anxiety, OCD and PTSD, and came to the conclusion that a large portion of the population is having moderate to severe mental health issues. However, a lot of it is hidden as people don’t wish to talk about mental health openly. I had severe anxiety and depression due to the pandemic, as well as how uncertain the future is.

A constructive solution I have discussed with family and coworkers is spending time outdoors. Local parks and spending time in a park walking in the forest is therapeutic and calms down anxious feelings and thoughts. I personally feel companies and schools should have activities outdoors at local parks to improve people’s mental well-being, as well as discussing mental health more openly, as I feel presently, schools and companies are lacking in mental health resources.

Brian Jones,

New Westminster, B.C.

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