“…volunteering has really made a massive difference to my life…”
Sam has volunteered in the gardens at Harewood for six years. “I wanted to share my story as volunteering has really made a massive difference to my life, I am more confident and feel part of a family at Harewood.”. Twelve years ago Sam suffered a head injury which left him with long term mental and physical health problems. Sam listened to a Monty Don Audiobook which discusses the healing power of gardens and gardening. Often in pain as a result of his injury, these words are really meaningful to Sam. Working in the fresh air, surrounded by stunning scenery and nature, Sam can be himself.
He also takes great pleasure in interacting with the visitors, sharing stories of the work he is involved with. Hearing visitors say how much they love visiting the Walled Garden makes his day and motivates Sam to continue to play his part in supporting the Grounds and Garden Staff and Volunteer Team.
This year Sam and his fellow volunteers have been working in the Walled Garden on the “no dig project”. Initially creating pathways and raising beds, then covering them with carboard or biodegradable carpet underlay, to minimise digging, suppress weeds and retain moisture.
Sam is a keen photographer and maintains a weekly photo diary to help him recall the work he does. His diary now runs to 1100 pages!