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Stories from the Field: Mental Health and the Outdoors

Sep 14, 2021

Harpa Erlendsdottir is a clinical occupational therapist and the General Manager of the Icelandic Adventure Therapy Association. Growing up in the majestic beauty of Iceland inspired Harpa to become involved in the field. She shares her story of being involved in Scouting and learning about Experiential Education. She would travel to the U.S. to take a course at Project Adventure to learn more. She shares stories about her experiences in the field and the Gathering of Adventure Therapists in Europe.


Bio from website: 

Harpa has a Bc.S in occupational therapy and a Ms. in organisational behaviour and talent management. She studied at the Academia of Via Experientia and has various courses connected to non formal education and experiential learning under her belt. Harpa also studied parent and infant psychotherapy at Anna Freud Center. She worked with youth with developmental and behavioural disabilities for 3 years, in a psychiatric unit for children and adolescent for a year and in a psychiatric unit for adults for 5 years. Facilitating Adventure therapy groups and non formal therapy groups with youngsters and young adults as well as individual therapy.

Currently Harpa works as a occupational therapist for the Kopavogur municipality welfare system in Iceland. Harpa was a scout and participating in all kinds of outdoor sports and nature has played a big role in her life from childhood. She has had the opportunity to experience the healing power of it through her work and the therapeutic values that nature provides.