Community garden at Coventry homeless residence given revamp - The Coventry Observer

Community garden at Coventry homeless residence given revamp

Coventry Editorial 10th Aug, 2022   0

A COMMUNAL garden at a key homeless residence in Coventry has been refurbished and reopened after two years of restricted access.

The Gateway, on Adelaide Street, celebrated the new-look garden with a barbecue and social event. attended by residents and others involved with planning and implementing the revamp.

Work included repainting fences, planting shrubbery and repainting garden furniture.

Residents have since set up a gardening group, taking it in turns to ensure the plants are watered and the garden is maintained.

Housing Support Manager at the Gateway, Gail Cooper, said: “The garden is already becoming a social hub for residents.

“Because of their involvement with the refurb, they have taken extra pride in ensuring it is maintained and looked after.

“It makes a huge difference to the accommodation, adding a refreshed atmosphere.”

The garden was closed in 2020 for safety reasons during the Covid-19 pandemic and had remained closed for two years.

The Gateway, north of the city centre, provides accommodation and support services for men and women who find themselves without a place to live. Residents come from all backgrounds including drug and alcohol addiction, mental health, and family breakdowns.

Gail added: “Communal spaces are vital to delivering a safe and inclusive environment to our residents.

“Covid was challenging for everyone, particularly those vulnerable with poor mental and physical health.

“The loss of this outdoor space meant residents were often left feeling isolated and cooped up inside, so to have it refurbished and reopened is huge boost for Gateway residents.”

Construction company, Seddon, led the project, sourcing materials and providing people from its painting division.

The firm worked with Citizen on the refurbishment and they both recently completed a revamp of the Gateway building = 16 rooms were transformed into single occupancy living spaces. A further two properties were added into the project, bringing the total to 18 new homes.

Other works included a new manager’s office, new laundry room, gym, and shop areas all of which were on the ground floor.

Rob Moore, Seddon’s business unit director, said: “It’s been great to see this project progress.

“We care greatly about creating places that add value to the communities that they serve and the garden at the Gateway is a great example of this.

“Our teams enjoyed working alongside the residents and hearing their stories.

“Completing a refurb is always rewarding but getting to know the end users and helping to make it a home for them makes it even more worthwhile.”


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