Third place vote-recipient and winner of a $1,000 grant
Since 2014, the Horticultural Therapy Program (HTP) of the North Carolina Botanical Garden has provided weekly horticultural therapy sessions for adults with serious and persistent mental illness at the Farm at Penny Lane, located in Chatham County, North Carolina. The Farm is operated by XDS Inc., a local nonprofit that provides holistic and sustainable community-based services to adults living with serious mental illness in partnership with the Center for Excellence in Community Mental Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Each week, 8 to 10 adults participate in garden-related education, gardening work, and group therapy time for sharing and reflection. There is currently no charge for the program. Operations at the farm, including the HTP, are supported by a combination of funds from University of North Carolina sources, grants, and private donations.