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Generous shoppers help healing garden bloom
07/08/2019

The finishing touches have been added to an attractive healing garden for Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust’s (NSFT) service users, carers and staff to enjoy, thanks to the generosity of Co-op shoppers.

Staff from the Thurne Ward at Hellesdon Hospital, in Norwich, have been presented with a cheque for £300 from the East of England Co-op’s Community Token Scheme. The money has been used to put the finishing touches to the healing garden at the ward, which provides a calming space designed to boost emotional, physical and mental wellbeing and help with recovery.

The project was the brainchild of carer Ann Shreeve (pictured left), whose son has received treatment at the hospital. It saw a group of volunteer gardeners landscape the space to make sure nearly every bedroom can enjoy an attractive view, as well as adding new paths and seating, together with extensive planting to ensure the garden remains colourful all year round. 

A kitchen garden area, which is planted with apple trees, strawberries and herbs, has also been created for occupational therapists to use with patients, along with a small space for outside activities such as yoga.

Matron Charlie Loades (pictured right), who collected the cheque, said: “We are very grateful to the Co-op and their shoppers for this donation, which has helped us put the finishing touches to our healing garden.

“The garden has been really well-received by service users, carers and staff, and is providing a safe, non-threatening outdoor environment for them to enjoy away from the clinical setting of the ward. This can have a really positive impact on mental, emotional and physical health by stimulating the senses and helping people to relax.”

It is now hoped that further healing gardens will be created across NSFT’s sites to give even more patients the chance to benefit from spending time outdoors.

For press enquiries, email: nsft.communications@nsft.nhs.uk