Connection with nature: the Italian Living Lab among pink flamingos
An enthusiastic and heterogeneous group of cultural and sports associations, school teachers, and council members of municipalities met in Cagliari for the kick-off meeting, the awaited starting point for the Living Lab in Italy.
The background was the conference room at the Molentargius-Saline Regional Park, surrounded by the famous pink flamingos and the pedestrian and cycle paths that emerge among the rich existing flora.
At the end of March 2023 the kick-off meeting gathered the guests here, a few steps from the Poetto beach, when we met all the people that enthusiastically started to know each other, co-create together, imagining possible cooperation scenarios for future Living Lab activities. An initial part of project presentation was followed by discussion, questions, ideas, and narration of previous experiences and activities carried out in other contexts, with different motivations and types of people involved. We talked together about the possible benefits for people who are not yet in the routine of spending time immersed in nature and which activities could bring citizens closer to naturalistic areas within the urban context. One's own experience has been put in play, highlighting the contribution of such activities on mental well-being, restorativeness and recovery.
The union of several people with different peculiarities, knowledge and expertise has been identified as the key role for the construction of an effective framework that can bring a real connection between human beings and nature.
The Molentargius-Saline Regional Park will be the place where the activities will take place, designed to develop a sense of belonging to the territory and nature. The idea is to build together creative activities, animations and games aimed at learning about the species of plants and animals. Meditation and discussion meetings on the sustainable management of places are also planned.
Finally, a game on the words of ethics related to the initiatives to be implemented together was realized, bringing out the sense of belonging and inclusion of all citizens.