INFTA is proud to announce the completion of the manuscript for the International Handbook of Forest Therapy (IHFT). The handbook will be released shortly by Cambridge Scholars Publishing in the UK.
The IHFT is the collaborative work of some 50 authors, edited by Dr. Dieter Kotte (editor-in-chief; Secretary and International Strategic Advisor, INFTA), Prof. Dr. Qing Li (co-editor; Nippon Medical School, Japan), Prof. Dr. Won Sop Shin (co-editor; Chungbuk University, Republic of Korea) and Prof. Dr. Andreas Michalsen (co-editor; Chair of Clinical Integrative Medicine, Charité-University Medical School, Germany).
The International Handbook of Forest Therapy will be available as hardcover and digital copy through all common sales channels.
INFTA has registered with the Australian Counselling Association (ACA) getting its Forest Therapy training courses recognized and accredited. As a counsellor, registered with the ACA, you can now apply for 10 credit points for your required Ongoing Professional Development (OPD) when registering with any of INFTA’s training courses – in Australia or abroad. With this, INFTA has become the only international organisation in the area of Forest Therapy which has been accredited by ACA and the community of professional counsellors.
As an ACA-registered counsellor, you can click right here to register for the next Forest Therapy courses and secure your OPD points:
Welcomed warmly by the International Director of the Northeast Forestry University at Harbin/China, Prof. Dr. Hongzhi Sun, INFTA’s Secretary and International Strategic Advisor discussed possibilities of future cooperation. Heilongjiang province comprises large forested areas not yet used for Public health, wellness or health tourism. Following intense negotiations with his Chinese counterparts, Dr. Kotte proposed a masterplan to train INFTA-Certified Forest Therapy Guides and research personnel forming the backbone of the new health industry. INFTA is involved in assisting the Chinese Society of Forestry in its endeavours to implement Forest Therapy following international training and research standards. Training of the selected staff of Northeast Forestry University is scheduled to take place at INFTA’s international training facilities in Australia and Germany.
INFTA’s Secretary and International Strategic Advisor, Dr. Dieter Kotte, came as Visiting Professor to the College of Economics and Management at Northeast Forestry University at Harbin/China. He was welcomed by Prof. Dr. Jinbao Su (Chair of Tourism Management). INFTA’s Secretary gave several important lectures on Forest Therapy and the relevance for the Chinese economy in the next decade (for the English translation, please see here).
INFTA’s President, Susan V. Joachim, and INFTA’s Secretary took part in the INFOM International Symposium and Workshop 2019 in Japan. The situation with regards to research in Forest Medicine conducted in Japan, presented by Professor Qing Li (who is a Member of INFTA’s Advisory Board), suggests that much more funding is required to confirm the initial findings, largely established on insufficient sample sizes. The symposium clearly demonstrated that it is imperative for other countries to replicate and extend research in the area of Forest Therapy and Forest Medicine.
INFTA is proud to announce the comprehensive MoU signed with the Swiss Task Force to foster research, policy development and Public awareness in the area of Forest Therapy. This collaboration forms part of the innovative Swiss-based project “Our forests for our health” (Unsere Wälder für die Gesundheit). The aim of the project is to develop an evidence-based and verifiable multi-professional concept fostering the introduction and implementation of Forest Therapy in Switzerland. The Swiss Task Force is spearheaded by medical professionals (Cardiodyn) as well as forestry and Public health experts (Pan Bern AG). A first nation-wide round table to design and operationalize the best way forward will take place in September 2019. INFTA will provide the required international input.
A string of events has been organized jointly with the Royal Botanic Gardens in Melbourne. If interested and if you wish to experience a guided Forest Therapy walk, please book here one of the following two-hour Forest Therapy walks conducted by INFTA-Certified Forest Therapy Guides and supervised by the INFTA-Accredited Training Provider In My Nature.
Another successful international training workshop was conducted 6-10 March at Pallotti College, Victoria/Australia. The five-day INFTA Forest Therapy Introduction which forms the beginning of the six-months comprehensive, mentored and supervised INFTA-Certified Forest Therapy Guide Training was joined by an international and diverse group of participants originating from Singapore, Australia and Colombia.
Another successful international training workshop was conducted 28 November to 2 December 2018 at Pallotti College, Victoria/Australia. The five-day INFTA Forest Therapy Introduction which forms the beginning of the six-months comprehensive, mentored and supervised INFTA-Certified Forest Therapy Guide Training was booked out with an international and diverse group of participants joining us from as far away as New South Wales, Queensland, Malaysia and Belgium.
INFTA’s Secretary, Dr. Dieter Kotte, was privileged to be invited to the Hangzhou International Workshop on Forest Therapy as international expert and keynote speaker. On recommendation of Prof. Dr. Qing Li, the leading expert in Forest Medicine in Japan, Dr. Kotte was invited by the President of the Chinese Committee of Forest Therapy to attend the landmark event in Hangzhou, the provincial capital of Tonglu. In his opening remarks, Mr. Zhao Shucong, Chairman of the Chinese Society of Forestry, the oldest scientific association in the Peoples Republic of China, underlined the importance which Forest Therapy will play in the years to come. In his keynote address, Dr Kotte called for the implementation of international standards with regards to research, training and raising Public awareness about Forest Therapy. Both INFTA and the Chinese Society of Forestry, represented by the Chinese Committee of Forest Therapy, are working on a Memorandum of Understanding to fuse their efforts nationally and internationally.
Susan V. Joachim, INFTA’s President, stressed the importance of Forest Therapy during the “Nature is Good Medicine” symposium organized by Parks Victoria in Melbourne, 31 August 2018. In his opening speech, Jeff Floyd, Chairman of Parks Victoria, underlined the possibilities of Forest Therapy as evidence-based, efficient and low-cost Public health practice. In his concluding remarks, Parks Victoria CEO, Matthew Jackson, suggested that Victoria needs to embrace activities like Forest Therapy to counter contemporary health issues across the state. The symposium offered an ideal start-up platform to raise more awareness about the manifolds benefits of Forest Therapy as a Public health approach.
Please take note of this interesting event in Athens, Greece, scheduled 8-11 May 2019. As the President of the Organizing Committee of the conference, Dr Christos Gallos, points out, human health and wellbeing are vital socio-political and Public health issues for today and for the future. They vitally define our lives. Forests, urban forests, and green spaces can have a significant influence on the health and wellbeing of many people. We might look at them as a kind of health insurance! Further information and registration info can be found here.
Susan V. Joachim, INFTA’s President, has visited the Republic of South Korea for talks with Prof. Dr. Won Sop Shin, former Minister of the Korea Forest Service. Here, Professor Shin welcomes Mrs Joachim at the National Center for Forest Therapy at Yeongju. Intense meetings coupled with outstanding hospitality and generosity by the Korean hosts were complemented with refreshing and revitalizing Forest Therapy and Nature Therapy applications. INFTA and the Korea Forest Service are expected to collaborate in future on a wide range of important aspects in the area of Forest Therapy, Forest Medicine and Public Health.
During her speech at the INFOM Symposium 2018 in Tokyo, Susan V. Joachim, INFTA’s President, advocated for international standards and intensified networking in the area of Forest Medicine and Forest Therapy, particularly with regards to research, training and PR. Here, Prof. Dr. Qing Li, the President of INFOM and leading researcher in Forest Medicine, welcomes Mrs Joachim cordially to the symposium. Professor Li and INFTA deliberated a number of concrete steps how to collaborate closely in future.