Hammersmith Community Gardens Association Newsletter
Hammersmith Community Gardens Association


JULY 2015

HCGA continues to raise awareness of the links between the natural environment and the benefits to health. Please see details of our current health and wellbeing projects below, along with who to contact if you would like more information or to refer a patient or client that you feel would benefit from our services.

Grow Well
We work with local people across the Hammersmith and Fulham borough to provide therapeutic gardening sessions for carers to give them a break from their caring responsibilities and supported volunteer gardening sessions for people who need a bit of extra support hopefully leading to participation in our regular volunteering sessions. For more information about the Grow Well project, or to make a referral, please contact Zoe on 07817 077740 or email

Plant a Seed, Grow Well
This is an NHS funded project, based around green care and related activities, to train health professionals working in residential and other care settings across NW London, providing them with the knowledge and confidence to develop therapeutic gardening and food growing projects within their own setting.
If you would like any further information about the Plant a Seed project, please contact Amy on 07875 492 814 or email 

Get Out There!

The Get Out There! project offers local unemployed people the opportunity to learn new skills in basic environmental management. Through our weekly volunteer days, participants get the opportunity to visit and work in a range of different habitats across London as well as local sites in Hammersmith and Fulham.
For more information about the Get Out There! project, or to make a referral, please contact Kevin -

Soup 4 Lunch
HCGA are supporting an innovative social enterprise, Soup4Lunch, that brings social programmes to sheltered housing for over 50s and vulnerable adults. The focus is on gardening and healthy eating and the aim is to engage residents in self-directed activity.
Soup4Lunch brings residents together, providing them with a chance to meet one another and socialise. It also provides an opportunity for residents to participate with the planting and maintenance of the vegetable gardens and to enjoy a delicious and nutritious lunch, made from home-grown, local produce.
For information about Soup4Lunch please contact: Anne on 07803082092 or email



This is a health and wellbeing newsletter for healthcare professionals from Hammersmith Community Gardens.
Welcome to our July Newsletter! We have had a busy summer, delivering CPD workshops, team away days and helping hospital gardens, care homes and GP surgeries get their gardens ready for growing. In May we held a professional tour, which included a tour of our sites and updates on our current health and wellbeing projects. Thank you to everyone who visited us, we always enjoy meeting people from other organisations and finding out about the inspiring work happening across Hammersmith and Fulham and the surroundings boroughs.
Our conference Prescribing Gardening: making greencare a natural part of the health service was a great success, with over 80 delegates attending on the day. Full details of the conference can be found below, including links to the presentation slides.


On Wednesday 27th May we delivered a conference for healthcare professionals entitled Prescribing Gardening: Making green care a natural part of the health service. This was delivered in partnership with Sustain’s Growing Health project, supported by The Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens and was held at Phoenix High School in White City. The programme included information and advice from commissioners and practitioners and case studies of therapeutic gardening projects. The presentations are now available on our website.

We continue to support individual teams on a bespoke basis through the Plant a Seed, Grow Well project. We recently delivered training for the Occupational Therapy Team from Women’s Services at St Bernard’s Hospital, providing materials, knowledge and practical support to plant a vegetable garden for the patients. Here is a picture of the raised beds after they had been planted with a range of vegetables an herbs.

We received a mention on BBC Radio 4 earlier this month, when H&F GP Doctor Cavanagh spoke on the You and Yours show about social prescribing and how he is referring his patients to HCGA's projects. For anyone who didn't catch it, click here to listen to the programme again (you will find it at 21 minutes 20 seconds).

We are now taking professional referrals
The therapeutic value of gardening and related activities has long been recognised, as has the importance of preventing loneliness and social isolation among older people. HCGA are now taking referrals from GP's and healthcare professionals to our therapeutic gardening projects. We are holding drop in taster sessions for professional referrals on Tuesday 4th August, 1-3pm at Ravenscourt Park Glasshouses and Wednesday 5th August, 1-3pm at Phoenix Farm in White City. 
This will be a fun, informal session in a safe environment and we will be delivering therapeutic  gardening activities and providing information about our regular volunteering projects. For more information please contact Amy - / 07875 492 814.


Laughter Workshop
Ravenscourt Park Glasshouses
30th July and 6th August, 12.20 – 1.30pm

Free to attend. For more information please contact Debbie Peters-Mill -

Creative Arts in the Garden
Ravenscourt Park Glasshouses
Wednesday 12th August

A CPD workshop for health professionals. Explore the calming benefits of nature and art for relaxation and relieving stress, all within the beautiful surroundings of Ravenscourt Park. Practice techniques that can be applied with patients and clients. There is no cost to attend but booking is essential. To book or for more information please contact Amy - / 07875 492 814.

Herbal Workshop
Ravenscourt Park Glasshouses
Saturday 8th August, 10am – 3pm

Cost: £5 or free to HCGA members and professional referrals. To book please email
An Introduction to Mindfulness
Ravenscourt Park Glasshouses
Thursday 24th September, 1.30 - 4.30pm

A CPD workshop for health professionals. Explore the benefits of mindfulness for personal and professional development & practice techniques that can be applied with patients and clients. “Mindfulness helps you appreciate your life instead of rushing through it. It helps you slow down and find your own source of calm. It connects you with your mind and emotions, takes the fear away and creates harmony”. There is no cost to attend but booking is essential. To book or for more information please contact Amy - / 07875 492 814
Relaxation Days at Parkview (Bloemfontein Road)
1st Thursday of the month, 2-7pm

Get a 20 min ‘pay what you can’ massage or reflexology session while finding out how local services (HCGA, Back on Track and Mind) can help you relax and look after yourself, plus yoga from 6-7pm. For more information contact Kim Barclay on 07507844009 or


Staff Mindfulness Sessions

As part of the Plant a Seed, Grow Well project we are offering staff team mindfulness sessions at your place of work. These will be charged at £5 per person (minimum of 8 people).
 Explore the benefits of mindfulness for personal and professional development & practice techniques that can be applied with patients and clients.
For more information please contact Amy on 07875 492 814 or email
Summer yoga pop-up in Ravenscourt Park
Yoga Fitness London are running pop-up yoga classes in the Glasshouses in Ravenscourt Park over the summer. There are several classes throughout the week and can be booked online.  The naturally heated glasshouses will provide a tranquil setting for these classes without the need for heaters and stuffy studio air. Places are limited and early booking is advised!


Our regular volunteering sessions will be taking a break during August and will start again in September. Please see the website for full details of all our projects and how your patients/clients can get involved!

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