Community garden looking for trainees seeking to improve their mental health

Volunteers can enjoy the physical and mental health benefits of gardening. Photograph: St Mary’s Secret Garden

A new trial programme called Greening for Wellbeing is to provide training in gardening and food-growing to those looking to improve their mental health.

The volunteer placements at St Mary’s Secret Garden will run on Wednesdays from 1-4pm for six months, beginning on 21 November 2018 and ending on 22 May 2019.

The programme will give participants the opportunity to experience the mental and physical benefits of working in nature.

St Mary’s Secret Garden is a community garden in Shoreditch which offers a safe space for people with support needs and the local community to get hands-on experience of gardening, gain a sense of inclusion and receive the benefits of horticulture and other ecotherapy activities.

St Mary's Secret Garden

St Mary’s Secret Garden

Siobhan MacMahon, Community Projects Coordinator at St Mary’s Secret Garden, said: “We are really excited to be able to offer our new Greening for Wellbeing project to people in the local area who are struggling with their mental health.

“These volunteer placements are a great opportunity for people with a strong interest in gardening to improve their wellbeing while doing something practical to improve their skills and gain confidence.

“They’ll also be helping to make the local area a greener and more beautiful place for everyone to enjoy. We encourage anyone who thinks they might be interested to get in touch with us and apply!”

St Mary’s provides a diversity of projects including accredited horticultural education, therapeutic sessions, corporate volunteering, community garden maintenance and school tours.

Anyone interested in applying for one of the volunteer placements should contact Siobhan MacMahon, Community Projects Coordinator at St Mary’s Secret Garden on, 020 7739 2965 or pop into the garden at 50 Pearson Street, E2 8EL, for a chat about the project.

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