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Shared garden supports Kaye’s wellbeing

Shared garden supports Kaye’s wellbeing

Our Annual Gardening Competition is now open for residents to enter. Read our Gardening Competition blog to see how to enter and read Kaye’s story below for inspiration!

Written by Link Wentworth resident Kaye

I am 60 years old, and I come from New Zealand. I have been living in the Upper North Shore for eight years. I love this part of Sydney. I’m close to national parks, which I love as I enjoy bushwalking. I have a Schnoodle named Cecil and a cat named Susie. I am happy being surrounded by animals and plants.

I have post-traumatic stress disorder and was recently diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. I was in hospital in the mental health ward at the time that my application was put in for housing. I was in the situation where I was facing homelessness. Thankfully, this was the first unit that I looked at.

When I moved in, I wanted to show that I take pride in where I live so I started with a little garden and it has grown from there, extending into the lawn area and outside my neighbours’ units. I received encouragement from Link Wentworth who is very supportive and passers-by who stop to say ‘What a beautiful garden.’ When I take Cecil for walks, I like looking at other people’s gardens.

My mum grew roses and other flowers and dad grew veggies. I was always interested and learned a lot from them. Gardening calms me down. It makes me feel good nurturing the plants and giving them what they need and seeing things grow. I love taking photos of the garden.

Photos taken in 2020

In 2019, I won the Annual Gardening Competition prize for Best Communal Garden. And in 2020, I was joint winner for the Best General Garden prize. We have a lot of garden space here. We have flowerbeds and other plants growing in front of the units. And I have a lot of pot plants outside my door and along the pathway.

Gardening is trial and error – what plants need shade, where to plant things, what needs more water. It doesn’t have to be expensive. Start small; a few cuttings from neighbours can be a way to start.

If you have any questions about the gardening competition, please call 9412 5111 (Chatswood Hub) or 4777 8000 (Penrith Hub) or email [email protected].

Watch the below video featuring Kaye. Please note this was filmed in 2020 before the Link Wentworth merger.

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