Foundations, based in Queen Street in Grimsby, provides drug and alcohol support services in North East Lincolnshire. Here, Volunteer & Peer Mentor Coordinator, Lucy explains the benefits of their allotment as part of recovery.
There's nothing better than getting out and enjoying the fresh air but some people don't have the luxury of having their own garden or resources to create a relaxing open space. At Foundations we have an allotment on the Littlefield Lane site, Grimsby. It is run by two of our peer mentors, Dave and Chris. Chris attends most days and Dave goes down when he is not at work which is about twice a week.
We are in the early stages of the growing season. The tomatoes and cucumbers are creeping up the canes in the poly tunnel, the lettuce is well established, the potatoes are just showing their leaves and the onions and leeks we planted last year are ready to be harvested.
We encourage clients who are attending Foundations to come down to the allotment and use it as part of their recovery plan. We want clients to be able to come down whether they are into gardening or not. It's not just about digging up the weeds; it's about making connections with other people in recovery, people in the community and connecting with nature. It gives a sense of achievement, gives purpose and responsibility.
Last year the allotment was put forward for the activity award with Addaction. It won first prize which was £300. The award was well deserved as the peer mentors and clients had put in a lot of hard work to produce the fruit and vegetables. Last harvest festival we had a surplus amount of fruit and vegetables so the peer mentors donated it to the women's aid centre who were very grateful.
Clients can come down to the plot and take ownership of a small area and use it to grow their own vegetables. We are keen for more clients to enjoy the fresh air and perhaps do some art, writing, crafting, make planters and much more. The plot is there to be enjoyed by everyone in recovery.
If you would like more information, contact Foundations on 01472 571200. If you are struggling with addiction or know of someone who is, phone the same number or call into our office on Queen Street, Grimsby, DN31 1JA
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