Devizes project looks to the sky to help clients find new jobs (From The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald)
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Devizes project looks to the sky to help clients find new jobs
12:32pm Tuesday 30th October 2012 in News
A project in Devizes that helps people with mental health issues get back into work is reaching for the stars.
The Greenacres Garden and Solar Observatory, operated by the Richmond Fellowship charity, has been awarded an It’s Your Neighbourhood certificate in the South West in Bloom awards.
The level 3 certificate rated “developing” follows a level 1 “establishing” accolade last year.
Mayor and Mayoress Kelvin and Pam Nash attended Greenacres, located behind Green Lane mental health unit, last Friday when sunshine was in short supply.
Greenacres’ senior supervisor Jonathan Baker said: “We have a six-acre site here where we support people with mental health issues getting back into employment.
“We have a very wide range of opportunities here, most of them in conservation and horticulture.
“One of our members of staff is very much into astronomy and it is something that interests of lot of guys who come to us.
“We now have a mobile observatory which we take round schools. It has to be a solar observatory as you can’t really do school visits at night.”
Recently members of Greenacres’ astronomy club viewed the Perseid meteor shower and they are working with the centre’s camera club on starting up astro-photography.
The centre also operates an IT workshop, where clients can learn a variety of computer skills.
Coun Nash said: “This is a wonderful facility to have in the town.
“Greenacres has done brilliantly in the last year. It has gone from level 1 to level 3. Who knows? Maybe next year they will be at level 5 – ‘outstanding’ – just like the Drews Pond Wood Project.”