Sense of Place and Belonging in Developing Culturally Appropriate Therapeutic Environments: A Review
journal contributionposted on 08.02.2021, 16:47 by Bruno Marques, Claire Freeman, Lynette Carter, Maibritt Pedersen Zari
The connection the Māori, the Indigenous people of Aotearoa-New Zealand, have to the land is threatened by the effects of colonisation, urbanisation and other factors. In particular, many Māori suffer significant health and wellbeing inequalities compared to the non-Māori population. In an effort to reduce such inequalities, there is a growing consciousness of the need to better understand the cultural and place-specific determinants that affect the health and wellbeing of population groups in different environments. This article explores how environmental and cultural connections to land enable the development of place-specific and culturally-driven principles that promote the health and wellbeing of Māori populations. It argues that concepts of place, belonging, landscape and wellbeing play an important role in linking environment and culture as well as in contributing to creating therapeutic spatial environments that promote both human health and ecosystems. A set of principles is developed that allows for the landscape design of such therapeutic environments while accommodating the socio-cultural and environmental values that promote health and wellbeing of both Māori and non-Māori people.