Gardening for Health project boosts mental health and wellbeing

By Jo Makosinski | Published: 23-Sep-2022

Crieff Community Hospital project supports health and improves outside spaces for patients, visitors, and staff

A gardening project at Crieff Community Hospital in Scotland is helping people reap the benefits of improved mental health and wellbeing.

The Crieff Gardening for Health project gives volunteers the opportunity to learn gardening skills at weekly sessions in a supportive and friendly environment.

It aims to improve participants’ health and wellbeing by building confidence and self-esteem while learning new skills.

Currently around 10 volunteers regularly attend the group, which runs twice a week.

Participants are also offered the opportunity to gain a qualification in gardening with education charity, ASDAN.

Gardening for Health project leader, Mike Hamilton, said: “Since the COVID-19 pandemic, many people have taken up gardening and research has shown just how valuable spending time outdoors in nature is to our health and wellbeing.

“The Gardening for Health project is about getting people out into the garden at Crieff Community Hospital to work together in a friendly environment.

“They enjoy learning together in small groups with support from Perth & Kinross Council Community Learning and Development team, while improving an area enjoyed by hospital patients, visitors, and staff.

“This project is making a real difference to people’s lives.”

One of the people taking part in the project added: “I like the company of others. It gets me out the house and helps me with my mental health.”

The Gardening for Health project has been developed with support from Perth & Kinross Health and Social Care Partnership, Perth & Kinross Council Community Investment Fund, Perth and Kinross Council Community Learning and Development Team, Growbiz, The Care & Well-being Collective, and the Friends of Crieff Community Hospital.

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