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How a community garden can provide a neighbourhood haven

Minnie Aumônier once wrote “when the world wearies and society fails to satisfy, there is always the garden”. In today’s turbulent financial climate, this quote might ring true for many gardeners.

As headline sponsor of the RHS Malvern Spring Festival for the second year running, we’ve come to understand how much people rely on a garden to provide an outdoor space for relaxation and leisure, without having to venture beyond their home.

However, those living in smaller or shared spaces may not have access to a garden they can landscape themselves. Instead, they may rely on balconies or terraces to get their fix of nature, or even indoor potting.

This is one of the reasons why community gardens can be so beneficial for towns and villages. Community gardens are public spaces that offer local residents a place to grow food and other plants for themselves. Below, we have outlined how a community garden can benefit you and your community, so grab your gardening shoes and get started!

Expanding & strengthening communities

A well-maintained allotment, community garden, or garden club is a great way to attract new residents to an area, adding to the appeal of a neighbourhood to green-fingered friends.

A greener way of boosting the local economy, a community garden also presents an opportunity for neighbours to connect whilst out in nature. Individuals who might otherwise lead a solitary life have the opportunity to socialise with like-minded locals. By making connections with people who you may not otherwise have the chance to spend time with, you can help unite your community.

Improving physical and mental wellbeing

Community gardening can be a positive way of encouraging a healthier lifestyle, both physically and mentally.

It can be a challenge to step away from the hustle and bustle of modern life; gardening encourages individuals to relieve stress, connect with the outdoors, and make friends with people who share their interests.

In addition to this, a public garden offers a pleasant space to exercise whilst being surrounded by the outdoors. Gardening in general is often linked to various health benefits, due to increased physical activity and access to home-grown, healthy food. By including vegetable/herb patches in a community garden, families who may struggle to access healthy foods through the cost-of-living crisis are able to utilise the plants grown by their community.

Gardening for all

A community garden is for all, no matter your skill or knowledge. For those who are new to gardening, a shared gardening space is a great way to learn from others.                                       

Community gardening can also benefit children, who can gain knowledge of where food comes from and how it is grown. It’s also a great opportunity for them to spend time with their parents or grandparents, having fun while they learn!

My Pension Expert – Driving Inclusivity

Here at My Pension Expert, community and inclusivity are extremely important to us.

That’s why for the second year running, we are proud to sponsor the RHS Malvern Spring Show.

Set against the stunning backdrop of the Malvern Hills, this year’s theme focuses on ‘Gardening for All’, which aims to drive inclusivity and encourage gardening in people of all skill sets.

Beyond our partnership with the RHS, we are heavily involved in supporting our local community. For the past year, we’ve been donating tech to Laptops For Kids Doncaster, a non-profit organisation that aims to increase access to learning for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds. We’ve also donated books to local school libraries.

In September 2022, we even introduced our education initiative, My Academy, which aims to encourage the young people of Doncaster to develop a career in finance.