National Gardening Week (26 April – 2 May) encourages us to get out into our gardens and to hold local events to get people outdoors and to get gardening. The MindSpace Wellbeing Garden has come a long way, but restrictions still mean that we’re not yet able to host a gathering at the site. Instead, we’ve chosen to let you know about some of the partners that have helped us on our journey. In this first piece, we introduce you to our friends at Stamford in Bloom.
Ann Ellis of Stamford in Bloom is a member of the MindSpace Wellbeing Garden steering group. Stamford in Bloom began with just 5 people coming together in 2017 with the aim of making Stamford attractive for residents and visitors. They initially worked with East Midlands in Bloom which gave them the added incentive of preparing to be judged in 2018. Stamford in Bloom first worked with MindSpace when planting snowdrops at the Recreation Ground as a charity project. “The community so appreciated this gesture that we continue to plant each year. Seeing families plant together is a joy” said Ann. Since the beginning of our Wellbeing Garden project, Stamford in Bloom has provided MindSpace with an invaluable combination of advice, hard graft and plants!
Stamford in Bloom has always been about the community taking part, there is no membership and anybody can help with any project at any time. “Our volunteers are like a kaleidoscope, coming together in one pattern and next time working and talking with different volunteers. Working outside is beneficial to everyone’s health and sharing a task allows easy conversation. We are delighted to be involved with MindSpace Garden to give their members a place to rest as well as work”.
Gardening is well known its mental health and wellbeing benefits and there are many ways in which gardening can help you with the 5 Ways to Wellbeing:
Volunteering with Stamford in Bloom or at the MindSpace Wellbeing garden or just gardening with family, friends or neighbours builds healthy relationships with shared positive experiences.
Getting out in the garden, in fresh air with your hands in the soil (gloves optional!) is a great way to improve your mental health as well as your physical wellbeing.
Grow and learn
Even advanced gardeners still have plenty to learn about – plant names, colour combinations, plant types, soil types, … Learning new things boosts self-esteem, gives a sense of purpose and helps you to connect with others.
Sharing your garden produce, random acts of kindness or smiling at a passer-by can all give you that warm glow inside. And let’s not forget about volunteering for local charities!
Pause and take notice
Watching the changes in the garden with the weather and as the seasons go by. Mindfulness and being in the present can help you to appreciate life, make positive choices and lower stress and anxiety.
To contact Stamford in Bloom, please email email@example.com