New allotment scheme launched in Swaffham

A community scheme using gardening to promote mental wellbeing will be officially launched in Swaffham next month.

Family Action's ESCAPE project, based at an allotment on the town's Tumbler Hill site, helps people to escape their day-to-day lives and discover a sense of purpose in a calming environment where they can relax, socialise and learn new skills.

ESCAPE has received Ecominds Big Lottery funding to help people experiencing or recovering from mental distress to become involved in outdoor projects for the benefit of their mental and physical health.

The project, led by Family Action, also aims to reduce the stigma often associated with mental health issues, as well as benefitting the local community and environment.

Plans for the allotment include a wildlife area, chill-out zone and a compost toilet, and it will be officially launched at 4pm on June 21.

Project co-ordinator Katy Fullilove said the project would not be possible without the help of volunteers and is always looking for more people to come and get involved, both as volunteers and as users of the space.

'There will be a barbeque, an opportunity to see the progress made so far and to meet the participants. We'll also be launching our exciting ESCAPE logo competition, which will be open to anybody who wishes to take part. We hope to see you there,' she said.

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