Garden Organic's horticultural therapy project offers opportunities and benefits for a wide range of needs.
There has been a special needs garden on site at Ryton since 1990 where disabled
and disadvantaged people have been able to experience the pleasure and satisfaction
of gardening organically. In 2004, the project was extended by enabling clients
to work within the main gardens. This has increased the range of horticultural
activities for clients and opens up opportunities to interact and communicate
Our principle aim is to promote self-esteem and confidence by stimulating and maintaining an interest in gardening in a supportive and caring environment.
What We Do
The group maintains four of the display gardens on site: the Children's Garden, The Memorial Garden, the Special Needs Garden and The Organic Allotment.
This includes such tasks as:
- Mowing lawns
- General garden maintenance
- Growing and harvesting vegetables
- Caring for tender plants in greenhouse and polytunnel
What We Offer
- Provision of a safe and accessible environment for disabled and disadvantaged people
- Support from 2 horticultural therapists and a volunteer
- Structured and appropriate work programmes to suit individual needs.
- A knowledge of basic gardening skills by 'on the job' training.
- Encouragement in social interaction, meeting the public, and working as a team.
- Development of life skills
- A diverse range of interesting and stimulating horticultural activities
- Working closely with special needs schools, including co-ordinated vocational activities
- An outreach service at your premises by arrangement, e.g. at schools, day centres, etc.
Experience has shown us that within a short period of time individuals have gained confidence, self respect, respect for others and independence.
What some of our clients say
"Everybody is friendly. I like lawn mowing. There's plenty of space, it's not crowded."
"I like doing different jobs. I like coming because I get help here, it's relaxing."
" It's a nice place to work. I like sweeping up."
"It's friendly, I like doing everything and getting on with my friends here."
"I like doing gardening. I like seeing my friends here. It's a very nice place to come to."
"I like cutting back plants, weeding and potting. I learnt about the seasons."
James is a bright, intelligent man who has been working with us less than 12 months. He initially came with a support worker as he lacked confidence, particularly when working in large groups. After only 3 months, James has built up his level of skills and works happily as part of a team and now travels independently.
The project operates on Mondays and Thursdays.
Fees: £35.00 per person per day
Growth Horticultural Therapy Project Manager,
Tel: 02476 303517 ex 222 ,
or 02476 303714.