Background Following a presentation to therapy colleagues on the benefits of horticultural therapy (HT) for clients with a range of health problems it was felt that clients attending our day hospice may benefit from a similar project.
During conversations with day hospice attendees it was found that several clients had voiced their sadness that they were no longer well enough to tend to their own gardens and it was something they dearly missed. Following meetings with our colleagues, the therapy team agreed to pilot a six- month HT group.
Two small successful funding applications allowed us to start in the Spring of 2016.
Aim To provide two sessions per week, alternating days on a fortnightly basis. Each session lasting for approx one hour to include a variety of indoor and outdoor activities and run by an occupational therapist, assisted by our TI and faithful band of volunteers.
Method Participation is voluntary. Numbers vary week on week dependent on the changing nature of their health status. Whilst there is a degree of planning we are guided by what clients and volunteers bring with them and their own ideas thereby ensuring they feel fully included in our overall aim to develop a patio are for all to enjoy.
Ongoing evaluation The quick five question evaluation form centres around how the session has made our clients “feel” in terms of enjoyment, confidence, inner peace and energy. Results so far indicate significantly improved feelings and we have found clients eager to join the next group, often bringing in donations as well as their advice and expertise!
Conclusion We are hopeful that following final evaluations, results will indicate a positive impact on those who have attended sessions and will lead to further funding to continue HT in our day hospice setting.
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