Not everyone that accesses the hospital utilises the outdoor space. For some, the internal space is enough to negotiate.
We believe that we can create activities that support peoples wellbeing in the internal space and which can help engage people in the outdoor environment. Through the following activities, we hope people will begin to look at the outdoor space differently, be able to enjoy the gardens available to them, and think of them as places that can support their own health and wellbeing. Specifically, we want people to think more deeply about urban forests.
‘The Art of Tea’.
‘The Art of Tea’ will be delivered in the hospital to engage with staff, patients, and hospital visitors. They can try a cup of herbal tea, take part in well-being art, be read to, and access a range of resources and materials regarding the benefits of urban tree planting, health and well-being.
Participants will be signposted to and encouraged to walk within the grounds and, once the gardens are created, experience the forest garden spaces. This we hope will help support people to increase control over, and improve their own health.
We had some lovely responses about out Darjeeling and lavender combination at the launch event. It’s a tea that can help reduce stress and anxiety, and support the stomach.
‘Teas for Trees’
The project will support the development of micro-project,which will create a series of well-being teas that can be used to engage people about the benefits of trees. The idea is to serve and sell tea with a story. In this case, marketing information on the boxes and tea activities will directly promote the project and the forest garden spaces.
Gardening, Horticulture Therapy & Environmental Stewardship
Gardening is a wonderfully flexible medium that can transform lives regardless of age or ability.
The benefits of gardening and which we will promote as part of our project includes:
- Better physical health through exercise and learning how to use or strengthen muscles to improve mobility
- Improved mental health through a sense of purpose and achievement
- The opportunity to connect with others – reducing feelings of isolation or exclusion
- Acquiring new skills to improve the chances of finding employment
- Just feeling better for being outside, in touch with nature and in the ‘great outdoors’
Horticulture therapy is the process of using plants and gardens to improve physical and mental health, as well as communication and thinking skills. It also uses the garden as a safe and secure place to develop someone’s ability to mix socially, make friends and learn practical skills that will help them to be more independent.
We can help build a set of horticulture activities that can more deeply support physical and mental rehabilitation, ranging from the use of specific sensory plants that spark memories, to planting schemes that encourage the movement of specific body parts.
There will be a range of opportunities for staff, patients, visitors and people from the local community to get involved with a range of informal and formal gardening sessions.
We will create volunteer teams who will be supported to act as stewards, maintaining and sustaining the spaces for their long-term impact. These volunteers will undergo skills based training and team building exercises to continue their work.