Local residents have transformed three community gardens in Lancashire to celebrate Learning Disability Week.

Learning Disability Week (16-21 June) is organised by national charity Mencap and aims to raise awareness of issues affecting people with a learning disabilities. The theme for this year’s Learning Disability Week was “Hear My Voice” and was aimed at involving people in shaping their local services.

As part of the national awareness week, Progress Housing Group staff and tenants put their green fingers to good use as they transformed communal gardens at three of the housing group’s supported living schemes, which provide accommodation for people with learning disabilities and mental health needs, in Blackburn, Darwen and Preston.

During the week volunteers weeded, trimmed, planted vegetable patches, painted fences and put up garden furniture.

“I have really enjoyed myself. Working in the garden makes us all happy and brings people together. Elizabeth, a tenant living at Birch Hall supported living scheme in Blackburn
“I had the pleasure of working with a group of residents with learning disabilities. It was one of the best days I have had in a long time. They wanted to build their own vegetable patch and everyone worked great as a team to achieve it. At the end of the day when we were ready for packing up, I think they would have been happy to keep going. I felt very humbled by their work rate. Volunteer Paul Fieldsend a tenant of Progress Housing Group from New Longton in Preston

 Staff from Botanical Group Services, a grounds maintenance contractor based in Blackburn, also gave up their time to help out during the week, providing free materials and advice.

To celebrate their hard work at the end of the week, everyone was invited to enjoy an afternoon of cream teas, music and games.

Progress Housing Group is one of the top five providers of supported living accommodation in the country, providing over 3300 homes across the UK for people with a learning disability/ and or along term mental health condition.

If you are a local gardener or perhaps a tenant of Progress Housing Group who likes gardening, please get in touch on 03333 204555 or email community@progressgroup.org.uk as we would love your help with our communal garden projects.

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