Thursday, 31 May 2018

The End of an Era: Greencare moves on

Today was a big day. an ending and loss; and hope for a future of which we know few details.  We knew it was coming, and we were as well organised for it as a royal wedding - with a great deal of work, a good bit of ritual and a fantastic cake.

Here's a video snip of my last walk to the yurt:

There were about twenty of us to do the day's business - group members past and present, staff, ex-staff, peer mentors from Hope Recovery College, and - in the afternoon - out special visitors. Of which, more below.

The event marked the end of our time at Iver Environment Centre, and the dismantling of the yurt -and putting it into storage until Hope Recovery College (which is part of Slough Borough Council's social programme for mental heath) finds a site to continue the Greencare work. And when it continues, it will be run by the recovery college, and its marvellous team of peer mentors - many of whom have been involved with the Greencare project over the last few years.

We have been unable to stay at Iver for several reasons - some of which are sad, and some of which point to a new hope for the future.

The sad ones include the way we have found it increasingly difficult, particularly over the last year or so, to fit with the corporate vision of National Grid, who are the owners of the land. They are moving towards an increasingly commercial use of the site - with little scope or space for small and somewhat unusual social enterprises like us, run and staffed by committed and passionate volunteers.

In some ways, it has never been an ideal site - several miles out of town, across the county boundary, and accessible by public transport only by a slow and circuitous bus journey. But the new hope comes from what we have built together over the last seven years there - the passion and dedication of everybody involved in the group, both members and staff - and the group dynamic methods we have developed by co-creation. The plans mean that the responsibility for, and ownership of, the yurt and greencare project now pass from the directors of Growing Better Lives (who will no longer be involved in the groups) to the peer mentors and staff of Hope Recovery College.

Once a new site is found for the yurt, it will allow a blossoming of the work to include many others who can benefit from its unique therapeutic qualities - in easy reach of town, but with all benefits and joys or working as we have all learned to do. That is our sincere hope, and we know it is shared by those who have leadership roles in Hope Recovery College.

After an extraordinary effort to dismantle the yurt before the anticipated downpour, which was completed by early afternoon (including coffee and pizza breaks), we had the ceremonial 'handing over' at 3pm. And still no rain.
The ceremonial handing over of the yurt

Introduced by music in 'The Garden of Time', members of the group and the staff enjoyed poems and moving testimonies before the formal business. One of four poles from the door section of the yurt was handed over to Geoff Dennis, the head of the Borough's mental health services, and Hope Recovery College. A magnificent yurt-shaped cake - lemon and elderflower flavoured - was cut and enjoyed by all. Just like Harry and Meaghan's, I was told.

Before the yurt is re-erected, the poles will be engraved with the mission statement of Growing Better Lives (in the right hand column of this blog).

So our dear yurt was packed away in a tiny cubicle of the yellow storage company - an extraordinarily alien environment - awaiting its release, and new home.

Watch this space to find out where it will be...


  1. Hello, I am Theresa Williams After being in relationship with Anderson for years, he broke up with me, I did everything possible to bring him back but all was in vain, I wanted him back so much because of the love I have for him, I begged him with everything, I made promises but he refused. I explained my problem to my friend and she suggested that I should rather contact a spell caster that could help me cast a spell to bring him back but I am the type that never believed in spell, I had no choice than to try it, I mailed the spell caster, and he told me there was no problem that everything will be okay before three days, that my ex will return to me before three days, he cast the spell and surprisingly in the second day, it was around 4pm. My ex called me, I was so surprised, I answered the call and all he said was that he was so sorry for everything that happened that he wanted me to return to him, that he loves me so much. I was so happy and went to him that was how we started living together happily again. Since then, I have made promise that anybody I know that have a relationship problem, I would be of help to such person by referring him or her to the only real and powerful spell caster who helped me with my own problem. His email: {} you can email him if you need his assistance in your relationship or any other Case.
    1) Love Spells
    2) Lost Love Spells
    3) Divorce Spells
    4) Marriage Spells
    5) Binding Spells
    6) Breakup Spells
    7) Banish a past Lover.
    8.) You want to be promoted in your office
    9) want to satisfy your lover
    Contact this great man if you are having any problem for a lasting solution
    through {}

  2. Everyone experiences challenges in their life, some of which are minor and some very significant. In some situations we are able to handle these minor or major challenges without any assistance, coming up with solutions that work well and add to our sense of self confidence and self-esteem in solving complex or challenging problems.Central London trauma treatment