Dundee Therapy Garden receives Veterans' Foundation grant
Veterans’ Foundation is proud to support the Dundee Therapy Garden with a grant. The charity provides British Armed Forces Veterans with the opportunity to access unique and positive therapy.
How does the Dundee Therapy Garden help veterans?
Dundee Therapy Garden provides British veterans with a unique horticultural therapy experience designed to help them overcome difficulties often picked up after service. Offering veterans bespoke horticultural therapy, the charity staff help each veteran establish and work towards goals that are set in place to improve their physical and mental health. Many veterans, after leaving the service face social isolation.
Many veterans charities quickly learn that veterans often need to be in the company of other veterans. This is normally due to the fact that people who haven’t served in the Armed Forces can’t relate to their experiences. Spending time with other veterans generally helps them talk through traumatic experiences. This is encouraged at the charity, veterans work with each other on projects and find themselves spending time with each other. Another goal of Dundee Therapy Garden is to help reduce loneliness and social isolation faced by veterans. Staff and veterans share meals together - cooking with the vegetables and herbs that are grown in the garden.
The veterans who work the varied gardens found within Dundee Therapy Garden also help the local community. While the veterans are encouraged to eat as many vegetables and other produce as they can, there are often many items that will not be eaten. These are all donated to local soup kitchens and community kitchens. Veterans are making a positive difference in their local communities.
How has Veterans’ Foundation helped Dundee Therapy Garden?
Veterans’ Foundation is one of Dundee Therapy Garden’s chief funders. This means that the charity’s day-to-day running is partially funded by Veterans’ Foundation. Every aspect of the charity needs to be funded so they can continue to provide excellent service to veterans that they do. New therapists and other members of staff have now been hired by the charity, this enables the smooth running of the charity and ensures that the gardens can remain open when other staff are on holiday or ill.
Veterans’ Foundation’s funding has provided UK veterans with physical benefits of horticultural therapy such as fresh air, exercise, balance and coordination. The grant has also helped to improve social interaction through teamwork, shared garden tasks, exposure to civilians and working with other veterans with similar problems. The Veterans’ Foundation grant has also Improved mental health & psychological functioning of veterans through gardening.
Tony, a veteran who has been helped by the charity, explains how his time at Dundee Therapy Garden has helped him: “I like the fact that I can do things to help people at Dundee Therapy Garden, it’s appreciated and I’m not a burden to people. I find all the staff very nice and easy to talk to, they are always available to listen and offer sound advice if required."