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Community garden a 'place to stop' for KMHDS clients

Clients of the Kimberley Mental Health and Drug Service clinic (KMHDS) have created a tranquil ‘place to stop’, with the completion of a community garden that has been in the works for 14 weeks as part two of the Mabu Liyan Project.

The design and development of the garden on the corner of Anne and Robinson Streets in Broome, was initiated to encourage engagement, structure and socialisation among the KSHDS service users and to provide them with a strong sense of self-achievement. The project was also rolled out in the hopes of raising awareness of ongoing mental health issues in the Kimberley.

Clients were enrolled in units from North Regional TAFE’s (NRT) AHC20416 Certificate II in Horticulture and each received a Certificate of Attainment upon completion.

NRT horticulture lecturer Christine Howe-Piening commended the work of her students, and said the project had come together exactly as planned.

“The idea of the garden was to create a gentle, nurturing space where anyone could feel welcome to sit and rest,” Christine said.

“Each of the service users at KMHDS are experiencing different realities and now they have this shady, quiet and peaceful place to stop.”

The latest phase of the project was inspired by an existing mural painted by local artist and NRT art lecturer Jackie Cheng back in 2016. The artwork represents four themes; saltwater, freshwater, land, and healing and culture.

These four themes or vegetation groups are defined symbolically by the mangrove, pandanus, bloodwood and boab and were used as a guide for the garden’s species selection and plantings.

The Yawuru term ‘Mabu Liyan’ translates to ‘strong spirit’ and does well to represent the impact the project has made on those involved and will continue to have on the Broome community.

The official opening of the Mabu Liyan Garden Project will be held this Wednesday, 19 September from 3.30pm – 4.30pm.

For more information, please contact the Kimberley Mental Health and Drug Service Clinic on 9194 2640.

Photo: Mat Beetson




Page last updated September 13, 2018