What Our Trustees Do
Charity trustees are the people who share ultimate responsibility for governing a charity and directing how it is managed. The Abbey Physic Community Garden trustees do some of the essential behind-the-scenes activities that keep the organisation going. Their main priority is ensuring that the garden really benefits the people that we support and that there are sufficient resources to continue this good work. The trustees meet regularly throughout year to review how the charity is performing and make suggestions for ways in which it could be improved. They develop and review our policies so that they comply with best practice, legislation and requirements of the Charity Commission and other bodies, deal with any staffing issues and fundraise for us.
The board of trustees has to cover a wide range of things so each has a lead responsibility for a specific aspect of the business. Suzanne, Tom, Paul, Jacqui, Ian, Alex and Karen are responsible for running the garden day to-day and they are accountable to the trustees but in reality, we all work together as one team.
It is an immense privilege to be involved and supporting such a great community. I value the welcoming environment, the conversations and companionship, the flowers and foliage, and of course the Friday lunch, and being a part of this amazing space.
I live in Faversham with my partner and two teenage children. I have worked in a wide range of social care settings and have experience of teaching in Social Care at both local Universities. We have just had four Occupational Therapy students on placement at the garden – a fantastic opportunity for the students to appreciate the impact of the garden on health and wellbeing, learning they can take into their careers. I have been interim Chair of the Trustees since September 2021.
I have known of the garden through work for a number of years and have always been impressed with how such an enthusiastic, dynamic group of people can manage to make a space feel so calm and welcoming.
Over the last couple of years I have spent much more time at the garden and have enjoyed meeting new people and admiring the garden in all types of weather (sometimes on the same day!)
I love being part of the wonderful dynamics that happen in one space, supporting the team with funding applications, sharing an amazing cooked lunch with members and always leaving with the feeling that it was such a pleasure to have met new people.
I live in Faversham, very close to the Abbey Physic Community Garden which allows me to get to The Garden easily to help out with the numerous activities we have here. I was appointed as a trustee in June 2018 and I love being able to assist with making The Garden a happy and fun place for all.
I have two children and run my own business, so I’m kept busy during the week by work and family life, but whenever I visit the garden, I leave feeling calmer and less frantic. As well as helping manage The Garden’s finances, I try and get involved in all aspects where needed in The Garden.
My family moved to Faversham thirty four years ago. Our children were brought up and educated here and in one case born in the town. It is a vibrant and remarkable place and the Physic Garden is one of the jewels in the crown. It is a special place with so many of its members devoted to it. I have come to know it well in recent years and am really pleased to have the chance to serve as Trustee.
I have enjoyed a long career as a social worker, much of it in Kent, ultimately reaching some senior management positions. This will be good experience in carrying out the work as a Trustee.
I became aware of the Abbey Physic Community Garden in 2014 when I moved into the centre of Faversham – this despite having lived within 4 miles of Faversham since 1982 and regarded it as my local town!
When I first stepped through its very low portal I was captivated by it. The greeting and welcome I received was simply marvellous. And on top of that, what a garden, so beautifully maintained and nurtured by the people who use it, in what a location, tucked away between ancient walls in this ancient town of ours.
In my role as Trustee, I have worked with the Board of Trustees to identify funding opportunities for the garden and apply for grants such as the Loneliness grant. I firmly believe in the connection between physical and mental health and have arranged two years of summer yoga classes in the garden. I am also our Monitoring and Learning lead and have supported Suzanne and the team to improve how we measure our impact on people’s lives.
I joined the Abbey Physic Community Garden almost four years ago. I fell in love with the place, the moment I stepped through the door into the wonderful space which is the Abbey Physic Community Garden.
I have worked for the NHS as a nurse, midwife and health visitor and then at Canterbury Christ Church University, teaching a range of health and social care students. I am now semi-retired and became a trustee in September 2021. This means that I have spent more time at the garden, getting to know other members and getting involved in different activities. I am becoming to fully appreciate what the garden means to different people and how it has helped to heal and nourish members when they are going through a difficult time. I hope as a trustee, I can continue to support what matters to the garden staff and members and help to build a sound vision for the future.
APCG’s staff are keen and helpful to all those seeking the services and support that APCG provides. They all would like to see you and between them they run a variety of fun and useful projects, events and clubs that keep things growing sucessfully!