Community project for improved garden space at Newton Community Hospital

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Patients, visitors and NHS staff at Newton Community Hospital (NCH) will enjoy a new and improved garden space this summer, thanks to a new project by the national social care charity Community Integrated Care in partnership with Renova and Community Health Partnerships (CHP).  CHP are the head tenant at the hospital responsible for providing facilities management for various NHS services including a 30-bed inpatient ward.  These patients are often older people moving from the hospital, via intermediate care at NCH, then returning to their homes.

Community Integrated Care is one of the UK’s biggest and most successful social care charities, supporting more than 4000 people who have learning disabilities, autism, mental health concerns, acquired brain injuries and dementia. Founded in the North West, they are the largest social care provider in the communities of St Helens, Knowsley, Warrington, Widnes and Runcorn.

Inclusive gardening project

At the heart of this collaboration is the creation of a unique inclusive gardening project, which sees the charity and the people it supports create a Rugby League World Cup 2021 inspired feature garden at Newton Community Hospital. Funded by Renova, and supported by additional coordination and investment from CHP, the programme brings together the three organisations to deliver a range of improvements at Newton Community Hospital. Work on the new garden is now underway, following Covid secure guidelines, and is creating around 10 rewarding volunteering placements for people who have care and support needs.

Kurtis Marsh, Community Integrated Care’s Volunteer Facilitator says, “It’s amazing that Renova has chosen to support our charity through helping to fund this Gardening project, and that Community Health Partnerships is also supporting projects like this, as these are really important opportunities for the people we support.”

A welcoming, accessible space

  • The Community Integrated Care, CHP and Renova teams will create a special garden space for patients, visitors and staff and patients at Newton to sit in, unwind and enjoy all year round.
  • There will be upgrades to existing raised beds; repainted chairs, tables and seating; and improvements to footpaths to allow full access for wheelchair users and to enable easy access throughout the garden.

 New planting chosen by the NHS hospital staff

  • Following suggestions from NHS and hospital staff, new planting at the garden will include scented flowers, vegetables and a herb garden

An inclusive and environmentally friendly project

  • The new eco-friendly World Cup garden will enable a range of gardening activities, both for people supported by the charity and patients at Newton Hospital.

Bringing the excitement of the Rugby League World Cup to the hospital

  • Community Integrated Care is the Official Social Care Partner of the tournament, leading the world’s first Inclusive volunteering project at a major event. By enabling a range of vocational opportunities, the works at Newton Hospital will become a focal point of the project.
  • With the tournament being one of the biggest global sporting events of 2021 and several major games taking place in Newton-le-Willows home borough of St Helens, in Merseyside, Lancashire and Greater Manchester. The garden is not only creating life-changing opportunity for participants but also bringing the excitement of the World Cup to the hospital.

Partnership working

John Hughes, Director of Partnerships and Communities at Community Integrated Care, says: “Renova’s commitment to social impact and maximising the impact of their estates is inspirational. Through their support of our charity this year we have been able to develop this unique, life-changing project. The opportunities that it will offer to the people we support, through providing vocational and learning opportunities, are exceptional. “We are sure that the people who work at Newton Community Hospital and access its services will equally be delighted by this project. Our thanks also go to CHP, who have been instrumental in managing and delivering this opportunity.”

Simon Waters,  lead for Corporate Social Responsibility, at Community Health Partnerships said: “We are excited for the upgrade to the Newton Community Hospital garden and are confident that it makes a big difference to the physical and mental health of staff, patients and visitors.  Just as importantly, we are excited to continue our partnership working with Community Integrated Care and look forward to seeing the benefits created for staff, patients, & visitors to Newton Hospital,  as well as the people supported by Community Integrated Care. We are confident that Renova and CHP will ensure this project creates tangible social value for our local community.”

Renova General Manager Ian Willett said: “The recent challenges we have all faced have shown the huge value of quality outdoor space, so the improved garden at Newton Community Hospital will be a huge boost to patients, visitors and staff. This project is also a great chance to support the social and personal development of people who access social care, allowing them to learn a range of new skills and develop a love of gardening. We can’t wait to see this exciting project take shape over the coming weeks.” Renova’s charitable support of Community Integrated Care has also enabled it to lead a wider inclusive gardening project across each of its local communities. The charity has created wheelchair accessible raised beds and a range of environmental and gardening resources at 21 of its care services within Renova’s communities – further amplifying the impact of this partnership.

28 June 2021

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Community Integrated Care

Community Integrated Care is one of the UK’s largest and most successful social care charities. It supports more than 4000 people who have learning disabilities, autism, mental health concerns and dementia. It was named the 2019/20 Charity Times Charity of the Year for its impact and innovation. www.c-i-c.co.uk

Renova Developments

Renova is owned by Fulcrum, an investor in over 40 community health centres under the NHS Local Improvement Finance Trust (LIFT) Programme in partnership with Community Health Partnerships. Renova is based in the North West of England, delivering health centres that serving the Merseyside and Cheshire boroughs of St Helens, Knowsley, Halton & Warrington. www.fulcrumgroup.co.uk