Place, Health and Resilience: Widowhood and the Mediating Role of Therapeutic Landscapes

Report to Board of NSW Police Legacy Inc.

Research output: Book/ReportOther report


In 1988, NSW Police Legacy was established as a registered charity organisation to provide financial and emotional support to Police Legatees, being widows, widowers and children of deceased New South Wales Police Officers. Currently Legacy provides support to approximately 1,300 ‘police family members’ scattered across New South Wales, with a number located in other Australian states. Financial support to Legacy itself comes from serving NSW Police and donations from regional and local government, institutions, corporate and community groups. Emotional support theoretically comes via a number of avenues. A network of Legacy Legators are required to provide a continuing link to the Police Service, to regularly maintain contact and assist Legatees in financial or emotional need, as well as report their progress to Police Legacy. Legacy also orchestrates a number of events with the aim of creating opportunities for Legatees to meet in a variety of natural or built settings, to share experiences and stay connected with fellow Legatees and to remain strongly connected with the Police Force and the Police uniform itself. This thesis uses NSW Police Legacy as a case study of the role of therapeutic landscapes in mediating health resilience in widowhood and of the experiences of Police widow/ers’ social, cultural and physical environments and mobility patterns.

A heuristic research framework uses the lived experience of both the researcher and the researched and other widow/ers as co-researchers in three distinct geographical regions of New South Wales. This thesis explores and evaluates the different scales of knowledge, intuition and experience of the spousal grieving process to enhance understanding of the human experience of a therapeutic landscape and its effect on health resilience.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherNSW Police Legacy
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2012

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