A first for Waitrose

A first for Waitrose

by Maggie Grand on May 7, 2014

waitroseWe benefited from a team of volunteers from Berkhamsted Waitrose to dig, weed and shovel at the Activity Centre site over three days last week.  Part of their focus was to help with the creation of a special garden at the site – The Memoir Garden.

Following financial support received from the Waitrose Community Matters scheme, and a subsequent visit by Dee Store of the Berkhamsted store, we were chosen to be the first to receive volunteering help in what is a new initiative for the partnership.  Staff were given time off from their normal roles to help with gardening activities at the charity which provides work skills in horticulture to local people with learning disabilities.

Emma Matthews, from Personnel, volunteered on the first day and found the experience a real eye opener saying “It was an absolute privilege to be involved in the creation of the Memoir Garden. Everyone at the Sunnyside Trust was so welcoming and every Partner involved found it a truly rewarding experience. I have been approached by several more Partners already asking me when we can help again. Without a doubt we will return!”

Peter Finch, Site Manager at the Activity Centre was delighted with extra help at this busy time of year “ We are always grateful for all the energetic efforts made by our volunteers.  It has been a real pleasure to work alongside the team from Waitrose and great to hear their compliments on the work that Sunnyside does.”

The Memoir Garden space is being created following the publication of a book of poems of the same name which was printed last year. The book was written by local author Emma Claire Sweeney and the poems created in collaboration with a group of our trainees to explore their memories and reminiscences.  The book has been an important step in helping our trainees express their feelings and make their voices heard.

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