Wesley Community Housing – Gardening Projects
Wesley Community Housing provides suitable, sustainable, and secure accommodation, so people can live independent, happy and fulfilled lives. They manage over 300 tenancies throughout New South Wales in Sydney, the Central Coast and Newcastle, supporting individuals, families, young people, people who are ageing, and people with disability.
As well as providing community housing of various arrangements, they also recognise the importance of helping their tenants to strengthen other areas of their lives. As many of those in community housing are not in full-time employment, Wesley Community Housing regularly works alongside key partners to provide courses and training that could support their tenants in building valuable life skills.
On 15 & 16 August, Wesley Training will be running a short training course in Gardening. Tenants attending this 2-day practical course will learn introductory-level skills to working in gardens and with plants. Topics covered will include: how to take care of plants, how to improve soils, how to utilise tools and fertilizers and techniques around staking and pruning. As part of the training, Wesley Gardening will be doing a demonstration on using equipment, which will also open the opportunity to tenants who may wish to volunteer with Wesley Gardening on a regular basis.
On 16 October, Ernst & Young, will be doing their second volunteering day at Harrison Street. The day will consist of volunteers supporting the maintenance and polishing-up of the outdoor garden areas of the property. As a thank you to the corporate partners, the Botanic Gardens will be onsite at Harrison Street at an earlier date, teaching the tenants how to put together succulents that will later be gifted to the Ernst & Young corporate partners.
In addition to the Harrison Street project, there is another project in Newcastle at Windale and Hamilton South. A horticulturalist from the Botanic Gardens will be working with Wesley Community Housing on the gardens at James Street Windale and Fowler Street Hamilton South. The first session will be held on 9 August, with construction starting on a native garden and an insect hotel at Windale, and a veggie patch at Hamilton South.
These partnerships are an excellent illustration of how various programs and service areas at Wesley Mission work collaboratively to provide more holistic services to their clients, while keeping in mind their client’s greater needs and ambitions.