Horticultural Therapy Volunteer

Ryton Gardens, Coventry
Our Horticultural Therapy Projects
We have provided ‘Growth’, an overarching social and therapeutic horticulture (STH) programme, for more than 20 years at Ryton Organic Gardens. Our specialist, trained and experienced staff and volunteers work with individuals to establish what their interests are and the skills and outcomes they hope to achieve by working with us.
We design and provide organic, therapeutic and social activities in our specifically designed gardens. We also develop broader life skills including; team work, communications, building positive relationships and managing boundaries. We currently work with adults with disabilities/autism, disadvantaged young people and more recently those living with dementia and those with a caring role.
What do our Horticultural Therapy volunteers do?
Our volunteers support the Education Officer/horticultural therapist in delivering a meaningful experience to young people or adults with a range of Special Educational Needs and / or challenging behavioural needs.
Why volunteer for Garden Organic?
Ryton Organic Gardens lie at the heart of our work to promote organic gardening, offering volunteers the chance to make a real contribution in a beautiful and unique setting.  Simply enjoy using your horticultural knowledge and communication skills to support our students, or use your time with us as a stepping stone into work or college.
What’s in it for you? 
  • Becoming part of a friendly and dedicated team
  • Gaining the satisfaction of seeing our students develop as you share your time and experience with them
  • Getting your hands dirty and enjoying the great outdoors
  • Developing your own organic gardening knowledge and skills

What’s involved?
Supporting the practical delivery of horticultural tasks. In the past this has included,
  • Working with individuals
  • Managing vegetable and flower beds
  • Enterprise activity
  • Seed saving
  • Pressing apples for juice
  • Making lavender bags,
  • Making bird boxes and feeders
  • Making windowsill herb and microgreen kits
  • Promoting the horticultural therapy programme.  For example, by
  • Helping at events,
  • Speaking positively to friends and contacts about the programme.
  • Talking to visitors about the programme
  • Giving the Education Officer any other assistance that may be needed
N.B. Our main volunteering days for Growth are Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
This role will suit people who:
  • Have some experience and knowledge of organic gardening
  • Have excellent communication and listening skills, are patient and trustworthy
  • Have previous experience of working with people with SEN or in a teaching /caring environment, although this is not an absolute necessity
  • Are prepared to commit to volunteering on a regular weekly basis
This role is subject to a DBS check

What do we offer our volunteers?
  • Full induction to Garden Organic
  • Appropriate support and supervision and training, including shadowing existing staff, coaching and mentoring
  • Task appropriate personal protective equipment
  • Reasonable travel expenses
  • Membership of Garden Organic*
  • Job references
We ask our volunteers to wear sturdy boots and weather appropriate clothing.
For further details and an application form please email hr@gardenorganic.org.uk or telephone for an informal chat on 024 7630 8208.  

*Subject to contributing an agreed number of hours per year.
Application Closing Date: 
Sunday, 30 June 2019