A GROUP of green fingered youngsters rolled up their sleeves to create an outdoor sensory garden for people with learning and physical disabilities.

Earlier this summer, the group of eight 16-18 year olds, were busy building a special garden to help stimulate the senses of users at the Fergushill Resource Centre in Kilwinning.

The garden has been developed to suit the sensory needs of the service users at Fergushill and includes a range of plants which will appeal to their senses along with brightly coloured ornaments, walls and touch/feel materials.

Recently, the youngsters proudly revealed their garden to overjoyed users at Fergushill.

The project forms part of the young people’s work within North Ayrshire’s Pupil Support Service Activity Agreement programme managed by Principal Teacher, Elaine Crilley and delivered by the post-school transition team with support and partnership working from local training organisation - Essentials Plus.

Activity Agreements are a formal arrangement between a young person and an advisor – usually from the local authority - which sees the teenager take part in a number of projects designed to help them in their transition into work, further education or training.

This horticulture project with Fergushill used a holistic approach to promoting health and wellbeing to the group as well as ensuring that they developed knowledge, understanding and skills which will benefit their mental, social, emotional and physical wellbeing.

This is one in a range of activities the young people will complete during the programme. From vocational tasters to music, art and sport, the youngsters will take part in a variety of activities in an effort to build their confidence and skills.

Councillor John Bell, Cabinet Member for Education and Youth Employment, said: “The Activity Agreement programme is great as it helps young people who need a little more support before taking the step from school to work, further education or training.

“During the course of the programme they each take part in a number of activities such as this one with Fergushill, which helps to build their confidence, provide them with new skills and experience which will bring them huge benefit in the future.

“They should be extremely proud of themselves as they have overcome some real challenges and barriers and this project is testament to their great progress.

“I’m sure the users at Fergushill will spend many hours enjoying and exploring their new sensory garden.”

Brandon Chalmers from Saltcoats said: “This project has been great fun to work on. We have met some of the service users and we hope they will really enjoy the different sensory things in the garden.”