Community gardens to homelessness support

By Col Stocker

Here are four more great projects from around the UK that we're delighted to help support, showing that no matter how big or small, people and communities coming together can do some great things.

The Shore Street Community Gardens are run by The Inverclyde Shed and provide an opportunity for those tackling mental health issues to experience outdoor space, growing, harvesting and working alongside others on projects and activities, with positive outcomes that help others and bring self confidence and pride. With members facing daily challenges around post traumatic stress, social isolation, anxiety and physical disability they want to extend the community garden to grow more fruit that can then be donated to local elderly people.

Within the Danesway Sheltered Scheme in Bolton, there’s a group of residence who are taking action against the detrimental impact on their physical and mental health felt from the removal of social contacts, physical separation from family, friends, and broader social networks. The Elderflowers Gardening Group want to run safe social distancing gardening sessions to improve mental wellbeing. With a real need to make their outdoor space Age & Eco Friendly, increase social connections and reduce loneliness and isolation. So with a little help from the Alpkit Foundation to help them on the way, it’s great to think how working on the project is really going to help their physical and mental health.

Providing a range of resources for individuals in need, Caring Hands in the Vale run a Food Bank and a Homelessness Bank within the Vale of Evesham. It has been operating for over ten years, supporting around 20-30 rough sleepers through the year and now they are in the process of obtaining a building to develop into a drop-in centre. This will include shower facilities, laundry, health hub, IT suite and lockers for use by rough sleepers and homeless. We are pleased to help the project by adding some support as they also look to increase the bank of equipment that they can provide to rough sleepers whilst working in conjunction with and by referral from outreach teams, to ensure that they are engaging with appropriate services.

To be able to access a space to learn about nature, how plants grow and the activity of wildlife can be hugely beneficial to young children. Well when Gorsley Goffs Primary School garden area was in need of a revamp, they want to take this up a notch and really engage the pupils by making them part of the project team as well, even to help carry out the work where possible.
With weed and pond clearing, the creation of specific areas for growing vegetables, plants, trees and flowers and a special wildlife focused area, this sounds like it's going to be a brilliant year at school.

Keep an eye out for more amazing projects!

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