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3 Benefits of Gardening for People with Disabilities

At RISE Services, Inc. Arizona, we work with individuals living with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) daily, assisting them in several activities like cooking, exercising, volunteering, and gardening. Did you know gardening offers several benefits, specifically for people with disabilities? If you work with or take care of individuals with I/DD who enjoy being outside and getting their hands dirty, gardening may be a fun activity for them to pursue. Along with being outside and eating healthy, there are several benefits to starting a garden. Let’s take a look at a few of them now.

Benefits of Gardening for People with Disabilities

1. Improves Motor Skills

Individuals use many different motor skills when gardening. You must scoop dirt, plant tiny seeds, pull weeds, and water plants. Many gardeners also rake, mulch, push wheelbarrows, and carry bags of dirt. These movements can improve fine motor skills, such as grasping, pointing, and twisting, and gross motor skills, like walking, lifting, and standing. 

2. Provides a Sense of Purpose

Gardening gives many individuals a sense of purpose and productivity. Not only are they caring for living plants and being active outdoors, but they are also learning new skills and practicing responsibility. If the garden produces a large harvest, they can share the fruits of their labor with family and friends. If you’re caring for an individual with I/DD who lives in a residential home, think of how proud they will feel if they provide healthy food for their housemates.

3. Promotes Physical & Mental Activity

If you’ve ever worked in a garden, you understand how much work it truly is. From cleaning out garden beds, filling containers with dirt, planting seeds or vegetable starters, and daily weeding and watering, a lot of movement and physical activity occurs. Gardening can also boost and elevate mental health. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, it can increase focus, attention, and concentration and lower one’s risk of depression and anxiety.

Creating Stability & Opportunities for People Living With Disabilities

The advantages of gardening are plentiful, and at RISE Arizona, we are committed to helping individuals with I/DD discover activities and hobbies that give them a sense of purpose and improve their overall health. Contact us today to learn more about our services, including family support and independent living homes.

Source: “The Benefits of Gardening for People with Disabilities.” Blog article. RISE Services, Inc. 04 Jun. 2019. Web. 30 Jun. 2023.