Melbourne is in the south-eastern part of mainland Australia, within the state of Victoria. Home to the First Australians for over 40,000 years, the Melbourne area served as a popular meeting place for local Kulin nation clans. The city is Australia’s second largest and is known as the culture, arts, music and sporting capital if the country. Melbourne has been ranked by the Economist Intelligence Unit as the world’s most liveable city for seven years in a row, from 2011 to 2017.

City population

5 078 million

Population density


City SDG index


Subjective well-being ranking

#11 (2020)

Average Temperature


Köppen classification

Oceanic Climate (Cbf)

Why RECETAS in Melbourne?

A city where problems of loneliness are observed…

Australians reported feelings of loneliness


of the population felt they lack companionship


of lonely Australians are more likely to be depressed


of lonely Australians are more likely to be anxious about social interactions

… and where the importance of nature is felt.

Adults in neighbourhoods where at least 30% of nearby land was parks, reserves and woodlands had 26% lower odds of becoming lonely compared to their peers in areas with less than 10% green space.

For people living on their own, the associations were even greater – in areas with 30% or more green space the odds of becoming lonely halved.

How will NBSPs be tested?

The subpopulation of Melbourne will include refugees and asylum seekers. RMIT will work with the ‘Many Coloured Sky’ foundation, which provides support to LGBTQI+ refugee and asylum seeker communities with capacity building, planning and project development. Specifically, we will work with a peer social support group that meets for activities, excursions, education, referrals, connections, networking, and emotional and practical support – in partnership with Uniting Lentara’s Asylum Seeker Project, who also provide sensitive and inclusive case work to this group.

Non-controlled exploratory complex intervention studies with a pre–post design, with one-year follow-up, will be undertaken.

Quantitative and qualitative methodologies will be applied, with an expected sample size of 50- 75 participants. Stakeholders will include the City of Melbourne and Parks Victoria.

Get in touch

Are you an organization based in Melbourne and dealing with these topics? Do you want to share your experience ? Are you interested in getting involved in RECETAS activities?
Contact us !

Conservation scientist and Convenor of the ICON Science Group at the RMIT Centre for Urban Research

Pr. Sarah Bekessy

Associate Dean of Research and Innovation at the School of Global, Urban and Social Studies at RMIT University

Pr. Katherine Johnson

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