Dementia Gardens: A Place to Grow

Launched By: 

Elaine Wiersma

$925.00 raised of $75,000.00 goal

Runs from: 

Thursday, February 15, 2024 to Tuesday, December 31, 2024

Dementia Gardens: A Place to Grow is a visionary project that brings together people living with dementia, their families, the university community, and community partners. A multi-pronged social enterprise, we aim to create an outdoor space for connection--to each other, to community, and to place. Using native plants, we will be implementing a day program for people with dementia, community projects for people with dementia and their families, and opportunities to connect with the Lakehead University community.

Dementia Gardens: A Place to Grow is a visionary project that transcends the boundaries of a traditional garden. Picture a reserved sanctuary on the campus of Lakehead University, where individuals living with dementia and their families find solace amidst native plant gardens.

Dementia Gardens is a thoughtful synthesis of the proven green care farm concept and the timeless beauty of native plant gardening. Our aim is to provide a dignified outdoor day program that not only enhances the lives of those with dementia but also offers vital respite for caregivers, along with family and community programs, all while fostering connections within our community. Utilizing a similar model to Dementia Green Care Farm in Halton Hills, we aim to bring this unique blend of nature, care, and community to Thunder Bay.

Dementia Gardens isn't confined to its participants; it extends its roots into the community. We envision not just programs but a native plant nursery—a business with a purpose. By cultivating native plants, we contribute to environmental conservation, providing a valuable resource to local gardeners.

Led by members of the North West Dementia Working Group, in collaboration with Lakehead University’s Centre for Education and Research on Aging and Health, the foundation of this collaborative project is rooted in the experiences and voices of those directly impacted by dementia within our community.

Dementia Gardens addresses various needs: it offers purposeful outdoor engagement for people with dementia, it offers meaningful activity for families to participate in together, it is a valuable respite for caregivers, it is a local source for native plant enthusiasts, and it is a platform for students to engage in meaningful learning experiences.

As we begin creating this haven, we seek your financial support. Your generosity will fund essential elements like infrastructure, shelters, tools, and some basic operational costs. Together, we can make Dementia Gardens flourish, not just as a program but also as a commitment to community, inclusion, social justice, and sustainability.

Join us in sowing the seeds of connection. Your contribution isn't just an investment; it's a pledge to nurture a garden of compassion, growth, and unity. Together, let's make Dementia Gardens: A Place to Grow a reality—where every plant, every smile, and every connection blossoms.

Mike and Judy Martell
Geoff Galway
Sam and Shannon Goodman
Sharon Galway
Cynthia Bujold