Garden therapy charity awarded funds to continue pioneering schemes

Garden therapy charity Thrive, based in Battersea Park, are celebrating after receiving a grant from the Wimbledon Foundation Community for the second consecutive year.

The award means the charity can continue to support people living with disabilities or ill health, and who feel isolated, disadvantaged or vulnerable.

The grant, for £5,000, will be used by the charity to help run its popular City and Guilds qualification programme in horticulture, and will help alleviate financial worry for client gardeners who wish to gain the qualification.

On the award, Thrive horticultural therapist Mark Emery said: “Client gardeners arriving at Thrive will be experiencing mental ill-health and may have other health issues.

“Gardening allows them to cope with this by being outdoors, working in nature and becoming part of a group dynamic. The grant from Wimbledon Foundation Community Fund enables our clients to access our gardening programme without putting a financial burden upon them.

“We support their progress from day one and support them towards obtaining a qualification in Practical Horticulture. After this we can help with CV writing and interview techniques and hope that will lead to them moving on into voluntary or paid work.”

Thrive is the leading charity in the UK using gardening to change the lives of disabled people.

What is social and therapeutic horticulture?

Social and therapeutic horticulture is the process of using plants and gardens to improve physical and mental health, as well as communication and thinking skills.

What are the benefits?

  • Better physical health through exercise, strengthening muscles and improved mobility.
  • Better mental health through a sense of purpose and achievement.
  • Less isolation and exclusion through connecting with others.
  • Better employment prospects through acquiring new skills.


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