Sacred Place Directory

The Green Road | Walter Reed National Military Medical Center


The Green Road Project at Naval Support Activity Bethesda, home of Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. Built on a woodland section of the campus, it will surround ‘Wounded Warriors’ and their families with the healing powers of nature in an oasis of respite—and combine a healing, patient-centered approach with rigorous data on what works to improve the health of veterans.

Hospital garden

The Green Road was among the TKF Foundation’s National Nature Sacred Award winners. This space in particular is a first of its kind. Created from a forested piece of land bordering the military’s flagship hospital in Bethesda, MD, the purpose of The Green Road is to aid in the healing process of “wounded warriors” dealing with the invisible wounds of war.  

The lush space is marked by fallen trees, a creek, which was restored as part of the project, and paved trails that were laid inconspicuously through the wooded space so that it would be accessible via wheelchair. The latter is a key feature as many of the soldiers residing in the area’s long-term living units are amputees facing long, painful recoveries.

A bench, with a the Sacred Place yellow journal tucked beneath, stands beside the creek.

Open since 2016, The Green Road, like all National Nature Sacred award sites, is also a research site. Multiple studies are underway to better understand the role nature can play in helping treat conditions like PTSD and traumatic brain injury.

  Articles & Research for this Sacred Place

A Road to Wellness

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Holistic Care in the US Military I—The Epidaurus Project

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At Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, nature is helping wounded warriors heal from invisible wounds

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Holistic Care on The Green Road

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Quantifying the Value of Nature

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Healing Our Wounded Warriors

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Illumination! – Along the Green Road Project: Measuring the healing effect of nature on Wounded Warriors

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Recommended Reading: Partnerships Along The Green Road Project

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A Holistic Path to Health: An Interview with Dr. Brian Berman

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