GRASSROOTS Bringing Wellness, Eco Health and Quality of Life for Everyone

Welcome to one of the first international district for wellness and quality of life for everyone

Case Study Wellness Valley, Romagna, Italy

The Wellness Valley is the first international District for knowledge in Wellness and the Quality of Life and the first example of a Wellness Community in the world. Since 2003 Wellness Foundation has been leading and coordinating this initiative which involves over 250 public and private stakeholders, including institutions, municipal administrations, schools, companies, medical doctors, research centers, health authorities, the university, sports and cultural associations, gyms, spas, and hotels. Today the Wellness Valley is regarded as an international benchmark for the realization of effective, inclusive, and sustainable integrated health systems. A place where the aspiration to well-being is confronted with the real ability to offer innovative experiences and opportunities to improve the quality of life and social, economic, and environmental sustainability, with positive effects on the whole community. It even has its Wellness Valley App.



Wellness Valley became popular basing its overall wellness design and the culture of its residential community. Wellness Valley recognized its target markets seek out and expect healthy rooms, food, amenities, and programming, are increasingly interested in how people live and if people are well cared for in the places that they visit. By recognizing that the wellness of its region is the DNA of its authentic wellness. Wellness Valley prioritises the wellbeing of its residents and their environment to create their own unique wellness value proposition and brand to their visitors

Wellness is a social opportunity for everyone: for people firstly, for companies, for the institutions, for the territory, for the whole community.

The Wellness Valley project leverages the human, economic and social capital of Romagna and networks the excellences to produce innovative projects and initiatives that bring wellness into the lives of thousands of people, with benefits at both an individual and a collective level. Therefore, the Wellness Valley builds its brand and destination reputation using a social innovation model that focuses on people and their health and promotes well-being for everyone of all ages. It creates an environment that supports and encourages healthy lifestyle choices for visitors and residents.

Over the years more than 70 best practices have been developed in the Wellness Valley which makes this territory a true living lab and demonstrate how it is possible to create a “Wellness Ecosystem”: from the educational programs against childhood obesity to free physical activity in public parks for active ageing, from the prescription of physical exercise for the prevention of chronic diseases to the promotion of lifestyle events up to active holiday packages that combine movement, food, and wine, nature, art, and culture.

Some Wellness Valley Destination Milestones

Where the GRASSROOTS Project Comes In!

GRASSROOTS covers the areas of wellbeing and wellness tourism in the capacity of ecotourism and eco health which remain as an emerging area in which young people are involved. The GRASSROOTS project responds to the EU’s challenges for young people in the post-Cold War context: travelling differently, learning differently and rethinking our relationship with our natural environment. GRASSROOTS offers young people the opportunity to take concrete action to propose new policies to decision makers. GRASSROOTS realizes that;

  1. Young ecotourism and eco-health entrepreneurs need different types of skills and experience, which leads to the need to provide young people with formal and informal education programmes and to surround them with the necessary skills;
  2. There is a need to foster communication and cooperation between these young people in order to exchange best practices and encourage collaborative business projects.

Each partner consolidates its specificity and expertise in a rapidly developing sector: ecotourism-health. Coompanion, OIRD, LABA, MMS are specialise in formal and informal training of young people. W8, Defismed, Materahub are specialised in eco-tourism and heritage enhancement. All partners are developing cross-cutting public/private projects to support young people.

The GRASSROOTS benefits from the active complementarity of the partners; they perpetuate their cooperation thanks to the creation of the GRASSROOTS network. The partners consolidate their position in the field of youth project support. It strengthens the visibility of the network on a global scale and the partners develop their relations in Europe.

GRASSROOTS will set up a global environment to foster the emergence of young entrepreneurial projects. It will include a set of communication tools, training and best practices. Specific objectives;

  1. To structure and develop an inclusive network of young activists, European entrepreneurs and youth actors, dedicated to the promotion and development of ecohealth tourism projects, based on the identification of good practices at European level
  2. Provide updated tools following the health crisis, based on the most relevant initiatives to support youth initiatives related to ecotourism (toolkit)
  3. Provide youth workers with relevant and renewed distance learning tools (pedagogy)
  4. Encourage the emergence of ecotourism projects and bring this dynamic to the attention of public decision-makers at regional events