“This project helped me see the belief I had in children.”

“The report is so incredibly positive and beautifully produced.”

2024 - Current

Royal Flying Doctor Service

Brief: Ongoing consultation and research of their GROW Program.

Learnings: Children continue to feel empowered through the opportunity to make meaningful contributions to their social circles, schools and community more broadly through growing food. In doing so, they have increased access to and engagement with intervention and support services to help with other aspects of their lives.

2024 - Current

Mission Australia and Uniting (+ previously Catholic Care)

Brief: A nature-based and therapeutic horticulture program for parents and carers to help build parenting skills, increase access to additional support, and help children to transition to formalised care or schooling.

Learnings: Regular semi structured access to greenspaces enable families to feel recharged, connected and supported by peers and services. The relaxed nature of the program and the context of the garden help parents and carers feel in control of their levels of participation and engagement depending on what is occurring in their lives more broadly. Children enjoy the natural rhythms that come from planned activities whilst maintaining autonomy and control through unstructured nature-based play.

2024 - Current

Centre for Children and Young People, Southern Cross University (and UNICEF Office of Innocenti) Ethical Research Involving Children Project

Brief: A website to bring an international community together to advance knowledge and practice regarding ethical methodologies for research that includes and privileges the lives of children.

Learnings: Importantly, the emphasis of ethical research involving children is moving beyond safe data collection practices to consider broader ethical issues such as how children can lead research design and implementation, how they can maintain sovereignty over new knowledge and how we protect their digital identities in an increasingly online world. Questions of how research is conducted across the globe in a way that challenges dominant power imbalances is also top of mind.



Duber Construction and First Steps Count Community Centre.

Brief: Advise on the design features of the Centre’s new children’s nature play garden and community food garden.

Learnings: One of the most powerful design elements we can incorporate into children’s playgrounds is enabling adults to sit IN the space, near children and in a way that encourages intergenerational play opportunities.


Evergreen Infrastructure

Brief: Offer specialist therapeutic horticulture design advice for client Upton Rd, Salvation Army.

Learnings: Through the principles of therapeutic horticulture we were able to design a garden for mothers and children’s fleeing domestic violence that was sensitive to the acute stage of their recovery, the short period in which they were staying in emergency accommodation and their preferred engagement with staff. The organisational commitment to a “Psychologically Informed Environment” meant staff were able to seamlessly engage in the space in a way that is trauma-informed, person-focused and strengths-based – all pillars of good therapeutic horticulture design.


University of Montana – Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities Disability Inclusive Gardening.

Brief: Advise the project team on the design, development, implementation and evaluation of an inclusive disability gardening program for adults with cognitive disability at a disability day service in Missoula, Montana.

Learnings: Typically conceptualised as “passive recipients of care” people with disability often lack the opportunity to demonstrate their meaningful and active participation within their own lives and communities. By developing an edible garden within a disability day service that was visible to the external community, this project made a loud statement about the capacity and interests of service users to participate meaningfully through growing food and beautifying their township. Staff also enjoyed having an alternative service space to enjoy.


Fletcher Street Cottage, Byron Bay

Brief: Help establish an edible, medicinal and herbal garden for use by clients experiencing housing insecurity and staff at the Cottage.

Learnings: Herbs and other medicinal plants offer a safe and free opportunity for vulnerable community members to access topical and medicinal alternatives to pharmaceutical medicines. Not designed to replace traditional medical interventions, the plants are offered as short-term solutions for minor ailments like surface burns, itchy bites or toothaches or to assist the digestive, respiratory and nervous system.   


Eat for your Life

Brief: Establish a new therapeutic horticulture garden for new migrants to Australia.

Learnings: Food gardens provide an opportunity for newly settled migrants to connect to their cultural backgrounds and access ingredients not necessarily readily available in Australian stores. Establishing gardens allows participants to “ground” themselves, contribute meaningfully to their new communities and showcase their cultural identity through growing and food. Commonalities between ingredients are recognised, whilst diversity of difference is celebrated, The garden showcases the ways both can live harmoniously in situ.


Better Cities Group

Brief: Assist with community consultation meeting to help establish Paradise Country Parklands Strategic Direction Report (for City of Gold Coast)

Learnings: Genuine community consultation where the rich history of a community’s connection to an existing greenspace is privileged in a master planning process unlocks a huge wealth of knowledge that often eclipses the existing data on a space. This process ensures a more thorough and considered master plan and a community who continues to feel heard, supported and in turn is more likely to support change.


Human Nature Adventure Therapy

Brief: Develop a therapeutic horticulture garden and afternoon program for young people seeking mental health support and staff.

Learnings: Access to programs in regional areas for young people continues to plague the success of intervention programs. After twelve months of trying to bring young people into a dedicated on-site therapeutic garden space, transportation issues continued to impede the program’s participation. Since this time, HNAT have found the garden has proved an important space for staff to retreat, reflect, decompress, and relax after long days or difficult conversations. The garden is now literally a transitional space between the carpark and the offices where staff can meander, gather thoughts, pick food and enjoy the wonderment of nature.


Kyogle Early Years Learning Centre

Brief: Develop an Outdoor Education Program for the Centre including: consultation of overall garden design, professional development sessions, establishment of a child-led plant hospital, and edible garden.

Learnings: Nature-based play continues to be an important opportunity for small children to express themselves, understand the world, practice emerging skills and communicate. Supportive of nature-based learning principles, educators appreciate the opportunity to learn more practical skills for developing and implementing nature-based activities within their practice and programming. Understanding the benefits that come from both passive and active engagement through nature helps re-assure educators that unstructured nature play offers children many developmental opportunities.  


Centre for Urban Greenery and Ecology - Singapore National Parks Board

Brief: A research project exploring the benefits of regular attendance to nature playground for preschool aged children.

Learnings: Findings demonstrate children were able to think of innovative and clever ways to learn through their surroundings and its natural resources. The outdoors offered new opportunities for children to demonstrate their resilience and capacity, in some instances showing capabilities their educators had not seen in the classroom.  Educators acknowledge the importance of critically reflecting upon their own relationship with nature and its impact on how children participated within it. Educators also appreciated the opportunities nature brought them for practicing child-focused pedagogical approaches which had been the driving force for them to work with children throughout their own teacher training.

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Neighbour Aid 5 Senses Garden

Brief: A research project exploring the benefits of regular nature-based and gardening sessions for people living with dementia and their carers.

Learnings: The benefits of hosting dementia-based therapy workshops in a garden setting include the physical benefits that come from being outdoors and sensory experiences that promote health and wellbeing. Emotional and psychological benefits were also reported in terms of feeling calmer, happier and more rested. Opportunities to connect with previous skills, hobbies and interests improved the relationships between the carer and person living with dementia. Participants also appreciated the opportunity to congregate and socialise with others living similar lives, as well as the opportunity feel connected to the broader community through proximity to other public spaces. The naturalistic setting of the garden dissipated the feeling that the workshop was clinical in nature and enabled people to simply enjoy their time with others.

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ARUMA and Southern Cross University

Brief: An action-based research project to explore the benefits of gardening for people with disability living in support independent living sites.

Learnings: The findings of the project show time spent in gardens at home impacted resident wellbeing, increased their physical activity and time spent outdoors, fostered a sense of belonging and pride in their home, and contributed to individual’s NDIS outcomes. Through the growth of the garden, residents also began to practice their rights within other aspects of their lives. Where gardens were situated in front gardens, residents also experienced increased meaningful engagement with neighbours and walker byers.

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Evergreen Infrastructure + Sydenham Regional Catholic College

Brief: To capture the impact participation in horticultural vocational subjects have on student’s overall sense of wellbeing and belonging within their school and local community.

Learnings: The findings reveal unique opportunities the garden provides for students to actively participate in ways that best suit their learning styles; take an active role in sharing power and decision-making alongside adults and peers; and contribute to their school and community. This positively influences their overall wellbeing. The garden also provides students with a much-needed opportunity to retreat from busy school and life schedules, an important positive influence on their sense of wellbeing.

Read more (Organic gardener magazine)

Read more on (Citygreen journal)