Horticultural therapy

Our Horticultural therapy programme helps heal and empower survivors of torture through nature.

People who have survived torture can experience ongoing trauma for years, like physical pain, problems with sleeping, trusting others and memory. But through different forms of therapy and support in our rehabilitation centres across the UK, survivors of torture can rebuild their lives.

At Freedom from Torture, horticultural therapy complements other services to provide physical, social, and psychological benefits. These include:

  • Connection with nature and the outdoors
  • Rebuilding social skills and forming new relationships
  • Finding purpose in meaningful activity
  • Developing grounding skills to help manage symptoms of trauma
  • Learning and building horticultural skills and knowledge
  • Cultivation and harvest of edible crops

Horticultural therapy takes place in our gardens, providing a safe space where people can immerse, engage and exist in the moment. We remove barriers for torture survivors by working with interpreters and adapting activities to optimise access.

We run group and individual sessions, and we always offer participants a choice of activity, for example indoors, outside or greenhouse – gentle or more active, gardening or craftwork.

We’re excited that following the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2024, a new garden space will come to our London centre and allow us to offer even more options for healing.

Support our garden

Your gift today could help ensure survivors of torture recover from their trauma and live for the future.