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15 Jan 2019

A mission made possible

Picture this, you are 72 years old, it’s a cold, wet winters night in Orange. Just like last week, you are hoping that someone will allow you to sleep on their couch for the night.

Fast forward six months and the Mayor of Orange has announced your entry ‘Best Floral Arrangement in Show’, with flowers that you have nurtured and picked from the garden of your new home.
 
This story was shared at the Keep Australia Beautiful award weekend in November, where the Mission Australia garden project at Benjamin Short Grove (BSG) Orange was awarded the winner of a Community Spirit and Inclusion Award.
 
Benjamin Short Grove is tailored to the needs of residents from a background of disadvantage, accommodating the aged homeless, those at risk of homelessness and the financially and socially disadvantaged.

No project has provided me with more job satisfaction than working with the residents and staff of Benjamin Short Grove. It is such a positive environment, as we strive to make the garden projects engaging whilst creating a beautiful outdoor space. It is a thrill to watch a facility come to life and bond through gardens.
 
Elizabeth Docking, Community Greening

As a coordinator for Community Greening, I was working with staff, planning and contributing to the garden prior to the arrival of residents. Since the winter of 2017, I have helped with activities such as growing from seed, propagating, potting up seedlings as gifts, making garden art installations and creating floral arrangements from flowers picked from the resident’s gardens. These activities have been made possible by the generous donations by Oasis Horticulture and Northcote Pottery, plus other personal donors.
 
Highlights of the project have included staging the inaugural BSG flower show and winning 10 prizes at the Orange Agricultural Show, all within months of the official opening of the facility. 
 
Congratulations to the staff and residents of BSG who have embraced the activities offered by Community Greening resulting in the project being recognised with this prestigious award.

Elizabeth Docking with the award she accepted on behalf of the project team.
Elizabeth Docking with the award she accepted on behalf of the project team.
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