Cancer support group developing therapy garden as space to 'rest and reflect'

A new therapy garden in east Antrim is to offer an opportunity for rest and reflection for those living with cancer.
Space to 'rest and reflect'Space to 'rest and reflect'
Space to 'rest and reflect'

Based at Eden allotments in Carrickfergus, the garden has been developed by local charity, 1 in 3 Cancer Support.

Karen McMeekan, co-founder of the charity explained: "It's part and parcel of what we do; 1 in 3 sends bouquets of flowers to people who are going through cancer treatment, and this idea is taking it a step further by giving them a garden to sit in. It's somewhere people can go to rest and reflect, and to enjoy the peace and quiet of being out in nature."

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Due to current guidelines around social distancing, the garden was created in staggered shifts thanks to the efforts of committee members and volunteers, including Karen and Michael McMeekan, Moira Foster, Edith and Tom McAdam, and Steve Ferris.

Working on the green space.Working on the green space.
Working on the green space.

It was developed with the help of PEACE IV 'Your Place Our Space' funding, aimed at bringing communities together through parks and open spaces.

Community donations of plants and seeds have helped the scheme to flourish, with old pallets re-purposed into fencing and planters.

The therapy garden was originally due to open in May, but this was postponed due to ongoing coronavirus crisis.

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"We hope to be able to open later this year, although we have to figure out the logistics around this - social distancing, how many people can be in the garden at any one time," Karen added.

1 in 31 in 3
1 in 3

1 in 3 Cancer Support was set up in 2008 to provide free practical and emotional support for people in the East Antrim area living with a cancer diagnosis.

Meanwhile, allotments at the site are offered free of charge to charities. For more information, contact [email protected]

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