A2 Review article, Literature review, Systematic review
Promoting Sustainable Well-Being Through Nature-Based Interventions for Young People in Precarious Situations : Implications for Social work : A Systematic Review (2023)

Obeng, J. K., Kangas, K., Stamm, I., & Tolvanen, A. (2023). Promoting Sustainable Well-Being Through Nature-Based Interventions for Young People in Precarious Situations : Implications for Social work : A Systematic Review. Journal of Happiness Studies, 24(8), 2881-2911. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10902-023-00683-x

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editorsObeng, James Kutu; Kangas, Katja; Stamm, Ingo; Tolvanen, Anne

Journal or seriesJournal of Happiness Studies



Publication year2023

Publication date02/10/2023


Issue number8

Pages range2881-2911


Publication countryNetherlands

Publication languageEnglish


Publication open accessOpenly available

Publication channel open accessPartially open access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX)https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/89376


Precarious situations disproportionately affect the well-being of young people. Social workers are concerned with sustainable ways to improve young people’s well-being, and nature-based interventions are proposed as sustainable solutions. We used a systematic review approach to identify how nature-based interventions can promote sustainable well-being. A literature search generated 1753 results, from which 49 peer-reviewed articles were selected for analysis. Young people in precarious situations (i) had underlying social, emotional, and mental health needs that put them at risk of disengaging from education or employment and (ii) were not in education or employment. The most common intervention was wilderness therapy, followed by animal-assisted interventions, outdoor adventure interventions, horticultural interventions, care farming, environmental conservation, surfing therapy, and sustainable construction. The reviewed literature indicates that nature-based interventions promote sustainable well-being by (i) ensuring that well-being was interconnected with environmental, social, and economic sustainability, (ii) fostering connectedness with nature, and (iii) producing enduring outcomes. We further used the Having-Doing-Loving-Being model of sustainable well-being to interpret well-being outcomes, concluding that nature-based interventions enhance young people’s relationship with society and nature. Implications for social work include collaborating with other experts to implement nature-based interventions to address well-being problems, advocacy for the introduction of nature-based activities into schools and recognition of nature-based interventions as alternative avenues for meaningful participation.

Keywordsnatureinterventionyoung peoplesocial worksustainable developmentwell-beinghealth promotionsystematic reviews

Free keywordsnature-based interventions; young people; precarious situations; social work; sustainable well-being

Contributing organizations

Related projects

Ministry reportingYes

Reporting Year2023

Preliminary JUFO rating2

Last updated on 2024-03-04 at 21:56