Last year, Sunderland College’s leadership team took part in the Active Sunderland BIG Walk to raise funds for a sensory garden at Bede Campus.
Sunderland College’s Principal Ellen Thinnesen, Vice Principal David Howells and Assistant Principals Judith Quinn and Vikkie Morton walked the 7.5 mile route to raise funds for the outdoor area which will act as a new project for the college’s Foundation Learning students.
The leadership team were glad to hand over a cheque for £434 to our delighted Foundation Learning department to allow work to begin on transforming the space.
Ellen Thinnesen said “The Sensory Garden will be an inspirational learning environment for our young people and adults with learning disabilities and difference, creating a rich, and engaging space where they can build their skills and confidence”
Sunderland College currently has around 75 Foundation Learning students, all between the ages 16-25, who have a learning difficulties, disabilities or emotional problems.
The money raised for the sensory garden will provide Foundation Learning students with the opportunity to transform the space and build a sustainable vegetable and sensory garden with a small flower bed, picnic tables and a pond. This newest development to the Bede Campus grounds will be of great benefit to the college and will provide a welcoming and attractive space for staff and students to enjoy.
Transforming the land will help to teach the students important, transferable life skills including the importance of healthy eating, cooking, creativity and team-working. The students will also have the opportunity to interact with our local community to sell vegetables grown in the garden and meet with other local gardening groups. The project will also encourage students to take part in further voluntary community activities and boost their confidence and ability to live independently.
The Foundation Learning Programme at Sunderland College teaches students the vital skills necessary to progress towards further study or gain employment. Through the programme, students gain maths and English qualifications and develop their personal, social and communication skills.