Installing four gardens at the Pact Southland's Invercargill residence has made the dreams of permanent residents come true.
Pact Southland regional manager Jackie Kruger said planting gardens had been on the residents' wish-list for some time, and planting the garden would have many positive effects for them.
"Their dreams have come to fruition. It's a really good activity, and it's good, healthy food for them," she said.
Pact Southland's accommodation caters to 16 permanent residents suffering from a mental illness, and has four spaces for people in respite care.
The gardens had also drawn residents together, as several were now focused on looking after their new gardens, she said.
The $1600 for the project came from the Invercargill chapter of Altrusa International, a women's service club that raises money for various charities.
Club member Denise Corson said the 26-member group had raised the money by selling lamingtons. They raised money for several organisations a year, based on need, and had decided to concentrate on fundraising for a project with Pact Southland.
The satisfaction residents would feel after growing their own garden was a large part of the reason Altrusa had been involved in the project, Mrs Corson said.
"There's nothing nicer than seeing a garden grow."
The gardens were installed on Christmas Eve last year.
Resident John Garron said he tended to the plants "as often as they need it" and had also been given a hand by other residents. He was excited about eating the vegetables he had looked after.
The gardens include radishes, lettuces, cabbages, silverbeet, broccoli, cauliflower, potatoes and a selection of herbs.
They were extremely grateful for the generosity of Altrusa group, Mrs Kruger said.
- The Southland Times