This autumn sees a fantastic collaboration between two local charities: Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice and Peterborough Environment City Trust (PECT).
The two charities have joined forces to help re-establish an ancient orchard at Thorpe Hall Hospice for the benefit of patients, their families and carers, community groups, staff, volunteers and the wider public.
The ‘Thorpe Hall Community Orchard’ project is in the running to receive a prize fund of either £8,000, £10,000 or £12,000. The amount awarded is dependent upon the number of customer votes received through Tesco’s in-store Bags of Help initiative. The Bags of Help scheme sees community projects awarded grants raised from the 5p plastic bag charge.
The charities are proposing the transformation of an unused walled garden at Thorpe Hall Hospice by planting it with heritage fruit trees through PECT’s Forest for Peterborough project. The space would also be improved with new pathways suitable for wheelchairs and people with limited mobility.
It will create a space that will provide therapeutic benefits, as well as volunteering and training opportunities. Improved well-being amongst patients and their families and those experiencing bereavement is one of the Hospice’s main aims. Having an enhanced outdoor area where patients can relax and take part in gardening activities will really support this goal.
Jo Ruff, Head of Family Support at Thorpe Hall, said: “People can find it difficult to just sit and talk, particularly about emotions and feelings. Being outside and having the distraction of an activity like gardening can help them access their thoughts and feelings and feel less self-conscious about discussing them.”
The tree planting will improve biodiversity and provide a habitat for a variety of wildlife. Planting trees also helps to mitigate the effects of climate change in a number of ways, including removing carbon dioxide, filtering air pollution, and absorbing rainwater and UV radiation.
Voting is open in store from 31 October to 13 November. Customers will be able to cast their vote using a token given to them at the check-out when they shop at Tesco. For more information visit www.tesco.com/bagsofhelp.