Wednesday, 24 September 2014


Joe Sempik - Social and Therapeutic Horticulture: Measuring it effects on Social behaviour

Welcome back to SHOUT and our 2014/2015 programme. For our first session we will be hearing from Joe Sempik, a senior sociology researcher from Nottingham University. He will be talking to us about the effects of Horticultural initiatives on social behaviour.  Joe initially qualified as a pharmacologist, more recently completing a Masters in Environmental Management and moving into sociology research, specifically around the therapeutic benefits of horticulture or ‘green care’ on well-being .  He is an accomplished speaker and researcher and has published many articles on the topic and spoken at many different conferences including the Cumbrian OT graduate conference as the keynote speaker and for the Thrive conference, the UK charity for horticultural therapy amongst a few.  

Occupational Therapists have long since been aware of the therapeutic benefits of gardening with many Mental Health settings having therapeutic gardens and/ or allotments for use with their clients. Sheffield is  lucky to have facilities such as SAGE  greenfingers in Burngreave
  that works with adults to promote Mental and emotional well-bring  and Heeley City Farm a social enterprise that offers employment training for adults through the use of horticultural interventions.  Further to this, many of the local hospitals have their own gardens which are used for interventions with clients to promote well-being.  Culturally, with austerity and spend-thrift measures becoming more common place, a rise in the interest and popularity of creative interventions such as crafts and gardening is spreading and with this a recognition of the additional benefits to well-being is again being acknowledged.

With the likelihood of usage of horticultural therapy in practice therefore we believe this event will equip you with the knowledge and background to be able to explain and justify the usage of horticultural interventions and gain a more in depth understanding of their effects on social behaviour.  Joe will use his experience from being the chair of the international working group on the health benefits of ‘Green Care’ as part of the European Science Foundation’s COST Action 866, and his extensive years in research into the well-being of Children and vulnerable adults to explain and disseminate the links between horticulture and well-being to bring to you a both informative and insightful talk on the topic.  Please join us for this likely sell-out event! 

For tickets email to reserve your place £2 students/ BAOT members £3 non members. ALL WELCOME!