Institute at the Golden Gate Launches Web Platform to Share Parks & Health Initiatives and Best Practices Nationwide

Press Release | Institute at the Golden Gate, MacKenzie Communications | July 13, 2011

As part of its ongoing efforts to strengthen the connections between the outdoors and health, the Institute at the Golden Gate has launched a new online platform designed to facilitate collaboration between the growing number of programs across the U.S. utilizing parks and public lands as catalysts to better health.

“A growing body of research suggests that exposure to nature and the outdoors has significant health benefits”

The online Parks & Health Guide ( highlights four key initiatives of the national Healthy Parks Healthy People movement: Park Prescriptions, Healthy & Sustainable Food, Youth & Nature, and Mental Health & Wellbeing. The direct result of collaborations between healthcare providers and park leaders facilitated by the Institute at the Golden Gate, Healthy Parks Healthy People was propelled to the national stage in April 2011, when National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis convened a nationwide gathering in the Golden Gate National Parks to explore how parks can promote healthier lifestyles to improve public health and lower healthcare costs.

The Institute’s new open source web platform showcases innovative case studies, articles and educational materials, and encourages grassroots programs across the country to collaborate and learn from each other’s experience in bringing parks and people together. Hundreds of doctors, educators, sustainable food advocates, wellness providers, parks and public lands professionals and community leaders have already logged on to submit their stories, share their expertise, and participate in the online community.

“A growing body of research suggests that exposure to nature and the outdoors has significant health benefits,” said Dr. Daphne Miller, a family practice physician and associate professor at the University of California San Francisco who has been a key proponent of the Park Prescriptions initiative. “This new platform is an excellent resource for physicians, park leaders and healthcare providers to share best practices and work together to promote stronger links between parks and health in our communities.”

The new Parks & Health Guide furthers the Institute’s mission to leverage parks and protected areas to drive action around environmental issues by promoting cross-sector dialogue and public-private partnerships. The guide can be accessed at or through the Institute’s website at

About the Institute at the Golden Gate

The Institute at the Golden Gate is a program of the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, in partnership with the National Park Service, promoting dialogue, collaboration and action for a healthier and sustainable world. The Institute draws on the talent, innovation and motivation of the Bay Area and Silicon Valley, and from the magnificent facilities at Fort Baker and Cavallo Point–the Lodge at the Golden Gate, to foster relationships with a diverse, cross-sector array of groups, organizations and individuals who share a common commitment to positive action and change.

MacKenzie Communications
Katherine English, 415-403-0800 x 26
[email protected]