Gardening Project

Many elderly people are at risk of social isolation and loneliness. As their physical health starts to restrict their involvement in social and recreational activities, they can begin to withdraw from the outside world. This can lead to deterioration in their mental health and well-being.

To help tackle this, we run a Gardening & Well-being Project which promotes social interaction and as active a lifestyle as possible. The service provides a charitable gardening clearance and maintenance support to the elderly and vulnerable in the county. Delivered by our part-time Gardening Team Leader with the support of volunteers, the Gardening & Well-being Project offers opportunities for people of all ages to volunteer together with vulnerable and socially isolated participants in activities such as maintaining their own garden or growing fruit, vegetables and plants. This can be part of a supervised team involving a group of volunteers or independently on a one-to-one basis with the support of the gardening team.

In addition to supporting individuals, we also work with communities and local groups to carry out community regeneration projects – often in partnership with local authorities, housing associations, schools, and the corporate sector.

After an initial suspension of the service in Spring 2020 due to the pandemic, our Gardening Service is now operating in line with current Government guidelines. For more information on volunteering or if you need gardening support, please contact 01844 348831/07917 619230.

Chat for Good service 

Whilst telephoning our clients in March 2020 to inform them of the suspension of our gardening service due to the pandemic, we found that they were feeling lonely and in need of advice on local community support services that could help them whilst they were self-isolating.  As a direct result of the feedback from our Gardening Service clients, we started our friendly check, chat and connect telephone support that we call Chat for Good.

We have continued to run this service alongside our direct delivery Gardening Service for our most vulnerable clients.

Image courtesy of St Francis's Children Society