At Quality Health Care our Supported Independent Living services offer much more than support, we also provide a home were residents can feel safe and pursue individual goals and dreams. Believe is one of newest homes and the residents have really taken to creating and tending a vegetable garden that offers more than food it also provides nourishment and is a place to relax and chill with friends.
The residents at Believe have begun to reap the rewards of their communal garden with the first bumper harvest of celery, carrots and beans being found in the resident’s soup bowls. However, residents and staff have found that the benefits of gardening aren’t just found in the stock pile of fresh, seasonal veggies which is to be found in the fridge. (Resident names have been changed)
Being present in the garden offers a sense of calm, tranquillity, and peace. Jane, a Believe resident has said that the garden is ‘beautiful, and really nice to look at’. Life can be busy and hectic; the garden is an escape from the chaos helping to reduce stress and anxiety.
For Peter, it’s an opportunity to rediscover and develop lost skills after spending many hours in the garden with his family as a young child. Peter has now taken to planting his own succulent garden. “I get a good feeling after gardening, better than watching a movie”.
The water melon which looks like a small dinosaur egg has certainly sparked Steve’s curiosity, “I just want to know how big it’s going to get’. Angela has also been captivated by the life cycle of the garden as she has expressed her enjoyment out of watching the flowers and vegetable grow.
Developing and nurturing the garden has cultivated a common purpose for residents and staff. Everyone has their own role, from the watering and fertilising to the digging and weeding, everyone contributes to ensure that the garden is a highly valued asset within their home. And it’s safe to say that all of that digging has certainly has a positive impact on everyone’s fitness levels! As the residents continue to sow the garden with winter veggie seedlings, it’s a given that what they will reap will be so much more than the humble cauliflower.