A Salford community centre is sowing the seeds of success by opening a community garden to help people recover from drug and alcohol addiction.
The Orchard, part of the Achieve Salford Recovery Services, opened the Olive Branch Community Garden during a ceremony attended by service users, staff and Salford’s Executive Member for Social Care and Mental Health, Councillor Gina Reynolds.
The garden, which features lavish borders and raised beds of fruit and vegetables, was created in partnership with community interest company, Incredible Education and payed for with Achieve’s asset fund for recovery.
An apple tree was planted to commemorate the opening of the garden, which was named by Orchard regular Deborah Malhotra who won a competition to name the garden.
Deborah said: “From my first steps through the door I’ve felt I was a winner and that's due to The Orchard and the support network they continue to give myself and others.
“I named the garden the olive branch because I feel that is what The Orchard is offering us and when I Googled it I found out it was a symbol for peace and victory and I thought we all want inner peace.”
Councillor Gina Reyonolds added: “I’d like to officially open this beautiful garden – The Olive Branch. I’m stunned by the garden and the size of it.
“I’d like to thank absolutely everyone who’s been involved in creating the garden. It is going to be a wonderful space and very therapeutic for people to rest and relax.
“I’d also like to pay tribute to all the staff here and all the partners who’ve done some absolutely amazing work to transform people’s lives. I think you’re not only transforming lives – you’re actually saving lives with the work you do. You embody the Spirit of Salford, which is what it’s all about.”