SHP's Gardening Project, Green Spark, received a helping hand this month after a team of volunteers started work to transform one of our hostel's gardens.

The volunteers - who visited the Arundel Project, a hostel in Islington for clients with mental health needs - were taking part in a corporate volunteering day organised by their employer, Lewis Silkin LLP. Eight staff members made the trip into London, travelling from all across the UK.

The team worked on both the back and front garden through weeding, pruning and tending to the vegetable patches. Looking to truly transform the space into a little green paradise, the group also helped transport new materials, dig new flower beds, and lay down compost and manure in preparation for spring.

The volunteers, who were also treated to a BBQ lunch, were joined by some of the hostel residents who helped out with the work and shared their stories and experiences with the volunteers.

Daniel, a resident said he was "truly grateful to the volunteers for their help, company and dedication". He continued: "I love being out in this garden, so thank you for making it a beautiful space for all to enjoy"

Gardening and enjoying green spaces is recognised to have enormous benefits for people’s physical health and well-being. For people with mental health, gardening and other similar activities can also support their long-term recovery with the NHS even prescribing it instead of - or with - medication. With the volunteers help, the hostel garden will become a true asset for the and will be enjoyed by the all residents .

Speaking about the day, Zoe Ingenhaag, Trainee Solicitor at Lewis Silkin, said: "We had a wonderful day! It was fantastic to get out of the office and spend time with each other in such an open environment. Best of all, we were joined by the residents and we found speaking with them all inspiring. We dug, laughed, ate, threw manure around together. I’d like to thank them for inviting us into their home. "

With over 20 hostel gardens and other green spaces, we're always looking for more volunteers for Green Spark. Find out more, or get in touch today.

Are you a business who is interested in starting a corporate partnership with us? Find out more about becoming a corporate partner or get in touch with our fundraising team.