Can Do Solent
16 October 2018
The Friends of the Hermitage Stream (FOTHS) is a small, community charity. They offer schools and community groups educational conservation sessions, aimed to encourage more people to look after and learn about the stream and the surrounding open landscape.
Can Do have taken part in some fantastic sessions with Friends of the Hermitage Stream but they’ve been limited due to restricted access to the stream and the absence of raised accessible beds.
The new accessible pathway and raised platform over the stream will allow all members of the community, regardless of physical ability, full access to areas they currently cannot reach.
Some of the activities Can Do participants have helped with so far include willow weaving a fence around the wild meadow area, cutting back a willow sculpture and litter picking.
They also ran a stall at the Hermitage Stream Open Day event to encourage more people to volunteer and make their own garden ceramic sculptures.
More diverse sessions
Pupils from local school, colleges and Can Do participants would like to tend areas near to the stream and take part in stream dipping activities but are unable to do so at the moment because it’s not safe.
When this work is carried out, Can Do will be able to run many more diverse sessions from this site and it will form part of a regular volunteering project supported by the Solent Can Do Steering Group.
Raised planters will encourage people who struggle to bend to get involved in gardening and seating by the stream would allow those who need to have regular rest breaks the option to do so.
Skills and confidence
It is hoped improvements to this area of Hermitage Stream will help people to become more involved with their community and it will enable local residents to gain vital skills and the confidence to take up further volunteering/work opportunities.
Catherine is Can Do Programme Coordinator in Portsmouth.
Our Can Do Gardening projects are funded by National Garden Scheme.