Zohar Marer, Partnerships & Fundraising
Lindengate is a mental health charity that offers specialised gardening activities to help those with mental health needs in their continuing recovery.
Our services, known as Social and Therapeutic Horticulture (STH), use the healing power of nature and the outdoors to improve mental wellbeing, boost self-esteem, promote social inclusion and encourage long term recovery. Getting people out of their homes and mixing with others outdoors is a catalyst to break down their social isolation and encourage recovery. STH is recognised to be beneficial for a wide range of mental health needs including anxiety, depression, loneliness as well as for people with autism, dementia and head injury.
According to the NHS, one-in-four people are known to suffer with mental ill-health in any given year. Demand for community based mental health services is high and increasing. Social care facilities are needed to relieve the strain on mainstream healthcare. Lindengate is an approved mental health service provider in Buckinghamshire, by the NHS Clinical Commissioning Group’s personnel.
Our 5-acre site, adjacent to the Wyevale Garden Centre in Wendover, is big enough to allow us to offer a wide range of gardening and horticultural activities which also include landscaping, construction, conservation, art, crafts; as well as cooking and baking. Our Gardeners can spend time in a managed, calm and safe environment, either singly or in small groups, working towards improving wellbeing.
One of our Gardeners, remarked: “For the first time I feel part of society”. Another Gardener said: “Lindengate’s made my life worth living”.
In identifying a need for people with dementia and memory loss, Lindengate created the Memory Pathways service with a dedicated Memory Pathways Garden. This provides a welcoming environment where Gardeners and their carers can enjoy nature, relax, experience success and build up self-esteem. It provides a sense of community by gardening with others and benefits carers with a place where they can meet other carers, share experiences and feel supported. A Memory Pathways service user said that it: “helped my mum enjoy laughter and keeps her mind active with all the things she loves – potting flowers, mixing with people and generally loving being out…”
Many people experiencing mental health needs cannot afford to pay more than a nominal cost towards their sessions at what is often a challenging time in their lives. As a charity we are interested in developing relationships with businesses in the hope of being considered when they next engage in fundraising, or choose their Charity of the Year.