Students from Homewood Sixth Form Centre and local primary school children will soon be enjoying a new school garden in which they can grow their own veg, thanks to the generous support of the Tenterden Lions Club.
The Tenterden Lion Club is funding six outdoor benches plus a supply of plants for the garden, which is currently being created in a previously unused area behind the Sixth Form Centre at the Ashford Road school.
The garden will not only be a safe and calm space where all sixth formers can socialise, deal with the transition to A levels pressures and revive from exam stress; it will also spearhead a vegetable growing project with nearby Tenterden Junior School. The garden will include a number of raised beds, built by the sixth formers using old railway sleepers, to grow vegetables and salad items planted and cared for with the help of the primary pupils.
Homewood sixth formers, supported by the Assistant Head of Sixth Form, Kerry Dungate, hatched the plan for the space transformation to help students adjust to sixth form life and at the same time build life skills through an outreach project. Members of the Sixth Form senior cabinet came up with the garden design, workedout a budget and sourced basic materials they would need before approaching the Tenterden Lions, which supports local community causes.
Representatives from the Lions formally handed over one of the benches with a cheque for £350 to Homewood School’s Head Girl and Head Boy, their deputies and some of the students who volunteered at the Tenterden Lions’ recent Pistons and Paws classic car and dog show event.
Mike Caridia, President of the Tenterden Lions Club said: “We are delighted to have been asked to help with this garden project. The Lions motto is ‘We Serve’ and the donation of the six benches to Homewood’s Sixth Form is a prime example of how we support a wide range of causes within the local community.”
Homewood head girl Hayley said: “We’re really grateful to the Lions for helping us to complete our garden plan as we wanted it to have multiple uses. The jump to A levels from GCSEs is a big one and can be scary, so being able to sit in our own calm space, socialise and de-stress is great. Gardening can also be a calming activity. We also loved the idea of being able to grow things with younger children so we can’t wait to get started with planting.”