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How a community garden in Ribbleton is proving vital during the pandemic

Posted on - 9th October, 2020 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Charities, Parks, Preston News
Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw at Westminster
Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw

Lancashire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Clive Grunshaw, visited a Preston community garden to see first-hand the work they’re doing to strengthen the local community and support vulnerable people.

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It’s run by Menhear, a charity dedicated to supporting men across the county who may have been involved in the criminal justice system, or need support due to anxiety, depression or loneliness.

The charity has over 50 members with the charity expanding across the county increasingly, with many mentoring sessions and one to one support being delivered digitally due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

Read more: Preston community groups awarded share of £25,000 funding

Based in Waverley Park, the community garden space is available to the group’s members to learn new skills, get exercise and meet other people who may be going through or have gone through similar things as them.

Menhear is looking to build on the success of this and other projects, with the creation of dedicated support around employability, food and mood and health and fitness. They will also soon launch a 24 hour support line for those who need help

PCC Clive Grunshaw and Menhear Director William Killeen
PCC Clive Grunshaw and Menhear Director William Killeen

The Commissioner praised the project, saying: “During these tough times, many people need support more than ever. Social distancing can increase feelings of isolation and depression and make people feel like they’re on their own.

“The work Menhear are doing in communities in the Preston and South Ribble area but expanding wider across the county, is combating this feeling and helping people engage with their communities. Activities such as this garden get people talking, and ultimately these kinds of small steps save lives.

“Being able to utilise the Proceeds of Crime to support projects like this is fantastic and means that these funding are going back into the county and having a positive impact in our communities.

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“This once again highlights the impact that these small grants can have – they provide real value for money and make a big difference across Lancashire.”

William Killeen, Director of Menhear CIC said: “It was great to have the Commissioner come see our project and what impact funding has on grassroots groups. This also shows that everyone is working together towards the same goal.

“Menhear CIC aim to combat isolation and stand proud in Lancashire as a Service to help men of all walks of life with a huge variety of needs. This can only be made possible thanks to help of funding from larger organisations.”

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What do you think of the community garden? Let us know in the comments below

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