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Green-Fingered Hit Squad Helps Dorset Disability Charity Improve Children’s Garden

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A ‘hit squad’ of volunteer gardeners and decorators has helped to spruce up the garden of a respite home for disabled children in Poole.

The team from care home provider Colten Care and sister company Colten Developments spent a day clearing and tidying the green space at the rear of Lily’s Place in Parkstone.

As well as weeding, trimming and other garden tasks, they painted two summer houses and a series of raised beds and planters.

The help was given under an ongoing community partnership between the Colten Group and Diverse Abilities, the charity that runs Lily’s Place.

Three of the team were from Colten’s nearby dementia care home The Aldbury which has chosen Diverse Abilities as its main charity to support this year.

Kim Harding, The Aldbury Home Manager, said: “Lily’s Place does such vital work for children with disabilities. We know how much pleasure a great looking garden gives our own residents and so we wanted to do our bit to help the children at Lily’s Place have a beautiful outdoor space too. We’re also organising a barn dance and various other activities at The Aldbury this year to raise funds for Diverse Abilities.”

Kim was joined on the garden day by The Aldbury’s Customer Support Advisor Juliana Clark and gardener Brett Gill.

Also helping, and describing themselves jokingly as ‘The A-Team’, were decorators Tony Quinn and Tony Shaw from Colten Developments, the company that builds all Colten Care homes.

The team were briefed on the tasks required by Daisy Roe, Corporate Fundraiser for Diverse Abilities.

Daisy said: “We have a maintenance team involving adults with disabilities who help us in the garden once a month but with peak growing season upon us we were only too happy to accept some further help. We are so grateful to the Colten team, especially as they went the extra mile to do the paintwork on our summer house and raised beds.”

The Colten Group’s links with Diverse Abilities have recently been strengthened with the opening of Colten Care’s latest home, Bourne View, which is next door to Langside School, a specialist school that the charity runs in Langside Avenue on the Poole-Bournemouth border.

As well as contributing funds towards an improved sensory room for children, Colten staff spent time helping with the school’s landscaping and exterior paintwork.

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