|Project title||Eco-therapy and self-sustainance: sustainable boarding institutes|
|Thematic area||Environment and sustainable development|
|Name of the organization||Barn Owl Foundation, Hungary (BOF)|
|Postal address||8744 Orosztony, Temesvári u. 8|
|Phone||06-20-322-5620; 06-30-282-0392; 06-70-289-8495|
|Project manager||Dr. Klein Ákos|
|Project timeframe||August 25th, 2013 - August 24th, 2014|
|Amount of support||8,332 €|
In cooperation with institutions and organizations active on the fields of child protection or psychiatric care in Zala County the Barn Owl Trust aimed at establishing small-scale ecological gardens as therapeutic means for improving the spiritual and mental health of their residents and patients, but also to make such institutions economically more sustainable. By the end of the project 5 new gardens have been created with a 2300 sqm of new garden area in total, and with the planting of more than 150 native fruit trees and shrubs. Beyond the creation of beds and the planting of fruit trees bird protection equipment and composting frames have been also installed together with the provision of the necessary gardening tools.
In addition to the establishment of vegetable gardens and orchards, the introduction of the patients, nursing and professional staff to the principles and practice of organic farming were of prime importance as well. For this, lectures (five times in total), entertaining excursions and outdoor events (a total of 4 times) as well as bird box making workshops (three times) were held. Altogether 30 psychologically affected patients and 3 dozens of youngsters with social problems were directly involved who has managed to acquire gardening skills in a total of 10 community occasions through which the gardens were set up in the institutions.
The events and actions have been designed to develop and apply an eco-therapeutic methodology based on the favorable psychological effects of active activity in the natural environment. The specialty of this model is the combined efforts of environmental and healthcare institutions by the means of which social, sustainability and economic problems can be answered in a joint manner. The effectiveness of the method has been assessed by an independent specialist: the results of the surveys clearly demonstrated that exercises with such ecological nature favorably affect the psychological and social status of the patients.
The experience of the project was summarized in methodological manual provided for and distributed among professional inquirers in 400 copies.