How do you turn a patch of ground into a project that improves lives?
The team at the Minstead Trust know how.
It was back in 1986 that the charity started a project in the corner of Furzey Gardens, in the New Forest with a small group of young adults with learning difficulties. Through hard work and dedicated tuition in horticulture, those five individuals blossomed with confidence and independence. Since then the project has grown in size, just like the garden that the group tends to. Students are supported to learn new skills through specially tailored training.
The Minstead Trust's vision has always been to support adults with learning difficulties to lead fulfilling lives and live as full citizens in our society. The success of the project sees it attracting people from Hampshire and Wiltshire.
The charity welcomes volunteers and if you'd enjoy working in beautiful surroundings with dedicated gardeners then please
Read below why some of the existing volunteers enjoy supporting The Minstead Trust.
Nick Why I volunteer: It’s great Fun!
The best thing is the relationships built with the students and staff.
I feel a valued part of the Minstead team, making a practical contribution, using dormant skills, which can happen when you retire!
Tricia: When I retired I decided to volunteer as I wanted to do something for myself whilst helping others at the same time. I enjoy working and helping the service users, and have discovered skills that I didn’t know I had! It has also broadened my outlook on life.
Everyone is always so pleased to see me, giving me such a warm welcome that brightens my day!
Angela: Having retired, I was hoping to find somewhere to volunteer so that I could use my teaching experience.
I could not have wished for a more fulfilling role. I just love working with the service users, helping them learn new cookery skills and watching them grow in confidence.
It’s a great place to make new friends. I go home on a high, having always enjoyed my morning and feeling so lucky to have found a rewarding place in which to volunteer.
Judy: I work from home and I found myself with a few hours a week to spare. I had heard about Minstead Trust and contacted them with the idea of volunteering.
I now work two mornings a week helping with arts and crafts. The role is varied, painting, collage, lots of sticking, sketching, colouring or even sewing. The sessions are always thoroughly enjoyable and it is particularly satisfying seeing the improvements in the skills of the service users.