Nine pupils at Camphill School Aberdeen
, which provides education and support for children and young people with special needs, are to receive awards from the Royal Caledonian Horticultural Society
recognising their achievements in horticulture.
The achievement awards, to be presented by the society’s president George Anderson MBE (well known for his regular appearances on BBC Beechgrove Garden
), recognise 80 hours of work per student in the garden on the Camphill Campus of Camphill School Aberdeen.
During their time in the garden, the students have to undertake 20 different tasks, including seven core horticultural tasks. They also have to achieve three personal goals while working in the garden.
This is the third consecutive year that a number of students working in the Camphill School Aberdeen garden have qualified for the award.
The students who will be presented with their awards are: Aaron Fairweather (16), Laura Crawford (17), Daniel Sim (17), Brandon Baker (18), Ben Gibson (18), Steven McDonald (18), Charlie Walker (18), Scott McWilliam (19), Jack Stewart (19).
Commenting on the students’ success, Ian Futter of Camphill School Aberdeen said:
“At Camphill School Aberdeen we believe that working in the school garden is an important element of our therapeutic programme. It is an opportunity for the students to learn at their own pace, while enjoying fresh air and appreciating nature.
“For some students this award can be a stepping stone to a formal qualification whereas for others whose special needs make existing qualifications inaccessible it provides recognition of their individual achievements.
“Our aim is not to train students to become gardeners, but rather to use the garden as a venue for learning valuable social and work skills. The individual goals of the award make this possible.”
Camphill School Aberdeen has around an acre of garden space at its Camphill Campus, about half of that is within the old walled garden of Camphill House.
Camphill House is where the international Camphill began when the first community opened its doors to children with special needs 70 years ago on June 1, 1940.
There are now 700 people who live and work in Camphill Aberdeen City and Shire
communities and 10,000 people around the world in 100 centres spread across 23 countries.