“About 13,000 people suffer from a head injury in Ireland each year, and face a dramatically altered life thereafter. Damage to the brain can result in behavioural and physical changes affecting concentration, balance, memory, understanding of situations, and judgement. ” – ABI Ireland
For twelve years now, the Sligo unit of Acquired Brain Injury Ireland along with Space to Grow have successfully run a rehabilitative garden project. A social group of both residents and community clients meet in the garden each week from February to November. As garden coordinator, Sophie Skinner has been responsible each year for the ongoing project, as well as overseeing the financial responsibilities.
The garden group is particularly effective as a rehabilitation project, as the gardeners work with tools, complete tasks, and make plans for the growing season. Working together in a social environment as part of a team brings a great feeling of accomplishment and belonging. Tasks are assigned to each gardener based on their abilities and are specific to each individual.
As a Winter project during one growing season, we published a 26 page HSE booklet entitled, ‘Our Organic Garden’. All proceeds from the booklet went towards the ABI charity.