RIVERVIEW, N.B. – A unique community garden project in Riverview is growing a lot more than just vegetables.
The $35k project funded by the federal and provincial governments is helping to grow young minds, while preserving older ones.
Seventy two-year-old gardening guru Donna Dupuis speaks to six-year-old Ethan Armstrong and gives him a little lesson in growing veggies.
“It’s great for them and it’s great for me,” she says.
Student and Community Garden Coordinator, Beck Canning says the goal of the garden is to get seniors out, active and more involved in their community, while acting as mentors for the community’s youth.
“The kids love interacting with the seniors and seniors are so caring and so generous and knowledgeable and fun,” she says.
Seniors advocate Cecile Cassista says projects like these are vital to keep senior’s minds and bodies fresh.
“This is absolutely a therapy for them to be out and be involved and the raised beds are really wonderful for people who can’t scoot down, it’s great.”
Dupuis, who suffers from a rare lung disease says the garden keeps her feeling sharp mentally and physically.
“It gets me out, it gets me exercising. My lungs are not the best, I am on oxygen so it really is helping me cause I’d be sitting home feeling sorry for myself,” she said.
“And I’ve made friends here that I probably would not have done.”
Spanning garden plots and at least three generations, seniors and kids dig in the dirt together.